Top 10 Most Frequently Asked Questions about Trademark Protection
Just like in any other country trademark registration process in the UAE is complex. You need to follow the standard procedures and rules to get your trademark registered with the Ministry of Economy without any opposition or rejection.
Related: Consequences of Trademark Infringement and Solutions
Trademark agents in the UAE can help you with the standard procedures the Trademark Office has put in place. In this blog, we will shed light on these procedures by answering the Top 10 most frequently asked questions about trademark protection in the UAE:
1. What is a trademark?
A trademark can be a wordmark (brand name), a logo or a catchphrase. A trademark can even be a shape (3D marks), colour or combination of colours, sound or scent. However, they become a trademark only when they are capable of indicating the source of origin of the goods/services. Trademark agents in the UAE can help you determine what can be considered for trademark registration.
2. When should I apply for trademark protection?
If you have established a brand identity or offer branded products or services, it’s high time you apply for trademark registration in the UAE. You should think about registering a trademark when,
- Starting a new business
- Expanding the geographic reach of an existing business
- Naming your product or services
- Introducing a new product or service
- Rebranding your business
3. What’s the rationale behind the concept of a trademark?
By registering a trademark in the UAE, you get the legal right to stop a competitor from using the same or similar trademark in that territory while selling identical goods or services. Registered trademarks also add value to your business and are a key part of the due diligence process done on your business by investors, franchisees and purchasers.
4. Is it mandatory to register trademarks in the UAE?
No brand owner is under a legal compulsion to register a trademark in the UAE. You can establish a brand and completely ignore the process of trademark registration. However, leaving your valued brands without trademark protection increases the risk of infringement. It will be tough for you to prove the trademark infringement if you have not registered your trademarks. On the other hand, those with a registered trademark enjoy greater legal protection than those without.
5. Should I conduct a search before applying for registration?
Carrying out a trademark search helps you to ascertain whether anyone else has registered a trademark that is identical or similar to your proposed mark. Conducting a trademark search in the UAE is the best way to determine whether your application will have a chance for success. If a conflicting mark exists, the owner of that may object to your application, leading to a rejection or a lengthy trademark dispute at the court.
6. In what territories should I apply for trademark protection?
It goes without saying that you must register a trademark in the UAE if you actively market your products or services in the country’s local market. However, if you are a UAE business owner with business interests in other countries, you should get protection in those regions as well. You can apply through Madrid Protocol for international trademark protection as it offers trademark protection in more than 125 countries via a single application, in a single language and paying only a single set of fees.
7. What can I do if somebody is using my trademark?
You can use trademark watch services in the UAE to detect if someone is using your registered marks without your authorisation. You can first send the infringer, a ‘Cease and Desist Letter’ as a formal warning to stop the unauthorised use of your registered trademark. If an amicable resolution is not reached, you can drag the infringer to the courts. It’s better to consult with trademark agents in the UAE before taking any hasty action.
8. What is a trademark class and how many/which ones should I file/register for?
Your application for trademark registration in the UAE should contain a list of goods or services that are relevant to your proposed trademark. You must find the appropriate trademark class by referring to the Nice Classification which is an internationally agreed system of 45 classes. If more classes are relevant, you should select those classes as well. Choosing the wrong class may create brand confusion among consumers.
9. How long does a UAE trademark registration last?
Trademark registration in the UAE is valid for 10 years. However, you can renew it every ten years as long as you ensure uninterrupted commercial use of the registered mark. Avail of trademark services in the UAE to renew your marks without fail.
10. What are my chances of successfully achieving trademark registration?
You can increase the chances of successful trademark registration in the UAE by ensuring that your trademark is not confusingly similar to an existing registration. Moreover, the trademark should be strong and distinctive to be accepted by the UAE Trademark Office. If your trademark is too descriptive or generic, it would be considered weak and may be rejected.
Hire the Best Trademark Agents in the United Arab Emirates
We have answered here some of the most critical questions regarding trademark registration in the UAE. Understanding these valuable lessons can help you to speed up the process of registering a trademark in the UAE. However, successful trademark registration can be easily achieved when you associate with the best trademark agents in the UAE such as Jitendra Intellectual Property (JIP).
JIP is one of the leading IP firms in Dubai with years of experience. We offer cost-effective trademark services in Dubai such as trademark registration/renewal, trademark watch, trademark search etc. JIP also provides worldwide trademark registration under the Madrid Protocol.