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Trademark and copyright registration in UAE


(United Arab Emirates)
Intellectual Property in UAE: questions and answers about trademarks and copyright in UAE - full necessary information about registration process, costs, time, using of IP and infringements (updated July 2, 2016)

GENERAL QUESTIONS

REGISTRATION PROCESS

VIOLATIONS OF TRADEMARK AND COPYRIGHT IN UAE

BENEFITS FROM INTELLECTUAL PROPERTY IN UAE

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Package of documents (PDF):
1. Application form for trademark
2. Application form for copyright
3. Presentation about Intellectual Property in UAE
4. Full list of official and service fees
5. UAE Law on Trademarks
6. UAE Law on Copyrights and Neighboring Rights
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Free  consultations with expert/s visit to cliants are available in all Emirates after pre-ordering and approval the expert's time on following topics:
1. Registration of intellectual property (IP)
2. Protection of rights
3. Financial benefits of IP in UAE
4. Investments in IP
Apply for registration your Intellectual Property
Apply for registration of trademark

apply now
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Online form for registration:

1. Brand name, logo
2. Web, soft, mob.app
3. Invention, know-how
4. Music, video
5. Business idea, startups
6. Domain name
7.  Package, shape
8. Other IP-objects

GENERAL QUESTIONS

- How can I register trademark and copyright in UAE?

The trademark registration in United Arab Emirates includes the following steps: first, checking whether the trademark being registered is entitled to protection in United Arab Emirates (absolute grounds of refusal). Not all trademarks can be registered as trademarks. For instance, merely descriptive terms for the respective goods and services may not be registered as a trademark. To avoid collisions between your trademark registration in United Arab Emirates and older trademarks a trademark search should be conducted. Second, after search, your trademark could be applied for registration in UAE Ministry of Economy (UAE Patent Office) through the local patent attorneys.

Copyright could be registered in UAE only after creation the copyright object in accordance with UAE Federal Law No. (7) of the Year 2002 Concerning Copyrights and Neighboring Rights.
There two main requirements - copyright object should be: result of intellectual work (not plagiarism) and expressed in any objective form.
You can register your copyright object in UAE by filing a simple form and depositing one sample of the work with the one of following organizations:

- Is registration of my company/product logo or brand mandatory in UAE?

Registration of trademark or copyright object in UAE is voluntary right of author (or rightholder). But in case of using trademark or copyright objects on the market as a designation of goods/service selling to customers - registration the trademark (or copyright) is mandatory to avoid penalties for cheating and deception of UAE consumers according to UAE Executive Regulation to the Consumer Protection Law.

- What is the best legal form for registration my brand - trademark or copyright?

There are 2 legal ways to register your brand - as a trademark or as a copyright. The trademark and copyright certificates have an equal legal power and both certificates are protecting your brand as an intellectual property object. The difference is in process of brand registration, registering bodies and law enforcement.

To choose the proper legal form of brand registration, your should determine the main target of brand using. If you want to participate in state tenders and work mostly with ministries and official authorities, we recommend to you register brand as a trademark. But for the businessmen, who sale goods and services on the open market for consumers (B2B, B2C) more efficient, cheaper and faster is register brand as a copyright.

- What are the trademark and copyright in accordance with UAE laws?

Definition of trademark: according to United Arab Emirates Federal Law No. 37 of 1992 On Trademarks - shall be considered a trade mark anything having a distinctive form such as names, words, signatures, letters, figures, drawings, logos, titles, hallmarks, seals, pictures, engravings, advertisements, packs or any other mark or group of marks if used or intended to be used either to distinguish goods, products or services whatever their source or to indicate that the goods or products belong to the trade mark's owner due to its manufacturing, selection or trading or to indicate the rendering of a service. The voice shall be considered as part of the trade mark if it accompanies it.

Trademark is protected according to the classes, included in trademark application form. Total number of classes are 45, among them 1 - 34 goods (for example 16 class - printed materials), 35 - 45 services (for example 35 class - marketing).
Definition of copyright: according to United Arab Emirates Federal Law Concerning Copyrights and Neighboring Rights - copyright work is any created compilation, in the scope of letters, arts, sciences, whatsoever is its type, mode of expression, value or purpose.

As a copyright work could be registered logos, books, pamphlets, essays and other written works, computer programs and applications, databases, lectures, addresses, sermons, dramatic, dramatico-musical works and dumb shows, music compositions with or without words, sound and audiovisual works, architecture works, engineering plans and layouts, works of drawing, painting, sculpture and lithography (fabric, metal, stones, wood) and engrave or similar works in the scope of fine arts, photographic works and works analogous to photography, works of applied and plastic art, illustrations, geographical maps, sketches, three-dimensional works relative to geography, topography and architecture designs etc.

- What is the difference between copyright and trademark in UAE?

Criteria Trademark Copyright
Registration process 10 - 12 months
Ministry of Economy
6 months -
US Copyright office

10 days - INTEROCO
European Copyright Office
Certificate validity time 10 years
(further extension needs additional fees)
During the life of author and 50 years after his death
Region covered by certificate Only UAE 167 countries members
of Bern Convention
(UAE is member of Bern Convention since 2004)
Economy branches covered by certificates Only registered
in certificates classes/ branches (total 45 classes,  for each class should be paid  additional official fee)
For all branches/classes of economy
Who can be an author Authorship for trademarks not possible Author could be
private individual
Who can be right holder Only legal entity (company, organization) Private individual or legal entity (simultaneously partially ownership by physical persons and companies is allowed)
Price of registration 6 000 - 10 000 USD 1 300 USD
Registering organization UAE Ministry of Economy International Copyright Office (INTEROCO) US Copyright Office
Official state body for intellectual property rights protection 1. Competition
Regulation Committee (Ministry of Economy)
2. Dubai Courts
Dubai Courts
Responsibility for intellectual property right violation Penalties and
product confiscation
1. Penalties and product confiscation
2. Criminal responsibility (imprisonment)

- How long is protection of trademark and copyright in UAE?

Registered trademark will be under legal protection in UAE during 10 years since the date of official TM registration. To keep trademark in force after 10 years - owner should pay additional official fess to the UAE Ministry of Economy for further extension. The quantity of extensions for trademarks certificates is not limited.

Registered copyright object is protected in UAE through lifetime of author and fifty years beginning from the first day of the calendar year following the death. The economic rights of the authors of collective works except the authors of applied arts shall be protected for a period of fifty years beginning from the first day of the next calendar year of the first publication in case that the author is a legal person but in case that the author is a natural person, the period will be calculated according to the rule stipulated in UAE Copyright Law.

- Who can be an author of trademark or copyright in UAE?

For the trademarks authorship could not be legally fixed, because application for trademark registration should be submitted to the UAE Ministry of Economy only be legal entities (companies and organizations).

In case of copyright protection as an author could be any physical person (or group of private individuals) who will be written in application form. In UAE are recognized and protected rights of authors of all countries-members of The Berne Convention for the Protection of Literary and Artistic Works. According to UAE Copyright Law author - is the person who creates the work, and the person who has his name mentioned on the work, or has the work attributed to him as its author at the time of publication, unless proved otherwise

- Can private individual be rightholder (owner) of trademark or copyright in UAE?

As a owner of trademark (according to United Arab Emirates Federal Law No. 37 of 1992 On Trademarks) could be registered only legal entities (companies and organizations).

Copyright ownership may belong to:

- Can the company be (owner) of copyright object in UAE?

Yes, the company could be rightholder of copyright work, and the contract between author and company should be signed in accordance with United Arab Emirates Federal Law Concerning Copyrights and Neighboring Rights

- How can I loose my trademark or copyright?

The trademark certificate will be automatically cancelled in case of liquidation of rightholder company. In this case no need to receive court decision for cancellation of trademark certificate. As per the United Arab Emirates Law, a concerned court shall, on a request from any interested party, may order the invalidation of Trademark certificate registration if it is proven that the trademark has not been practically used for 5 years.

The copyright (which was registered on private individual) could be cancelled only after UAE court decision. There are no other official bodies in UAE who can cancel the registration of copyright certificate.

REGISTRATION PROCESS

- Which organizations are responsible for trademark and copyright registration in UAE?

The Ministry of Economy and Commerce is responsible in UAE for trademark registration.

Copyright could be registered through:

- How much is registration of trademark and copyright in UAE?

There are costs for intellectual property registration in UAE:

- How long is trademark and copyright registration process in UAE?

The period of time for registration process are following:

- Which documents should be prepared for trademark and copyright registration in UAE?

For trademark registration following documents should be prepared:

For copyright registration:

- Is the UAE member on Bern convention on copyright?

Yes, United Arab Emirates joined to the Berne Convention for the Protection of Literary and Artistic Works on July 14, 2004. The Berne Convention is an international agreement governing copyright, which was first accepted in Berne, Switzerland, in 1886. The Berne Convention formally mandated several aspects of modern copyright law; it introduced the concept that a copyright exists the moment a work is "fixed". It also enforces a requirement that countries recognize copyrights held by the citizens of all other signatory countries.

The Berne Convention is administrated by World Intellectual Property Organization. The Berne Convention, adopted in 1886, deals with the protection of works and the rights of their authors. It provides creators such as authors, musicians, poets, painters etc. with the means to control how their works are used, by whom, and on what terms. It is based on three basic principles and contains a series of provisions determining the minimum protection to be granted, as well as special provisions available to developing countries that want to make use of them.

VIOLATIONS OF TRADEMARK AND COPYRIGHT

- What are trademark and copyright infringements in UAE?

Trademark infringement in UAE is the unauthorized use of a trademark on or in connection with goods and/or services selling/providing in UAE territory in a manner that is likely to cause confusion, deception, or mistake about the original source of the goods/services. A trademark rightholder who believes its mark is being violated may file a civil action in Competition Regulation Committee Ministry of Economy either state court for trademark infringement, depending on the circumstances. However, in most cases, trademark rightholder choose to sue for infringement in Competition Regulation Committee.

Copyright infringement is the use of works protected by copyright law without permission, infringing certain exclusive rights granted to the copyright holder, such as the right to reproduce, distribute, display or perform the protected work, or to make derivative works.

In UAE infringement of copyrights of computer programs, trademarks and patents is also 'haram' (forbidden) as per Islamic Shariah, according to a fatwa issued on June 2014 by Dr Ali Ahmed Mashael, Grand Mufti at the Department of Islamic Affairs and Charitable Activities in Dubai.

- Which official state body in UAE can help me with my trademark or copyright protection?

The claims concerning infringements of trademarks could be submitted to the following divisions of UAE Ministry of Economy:

The claims concerning infringements of copyright should be considered by courts.

- What are the penalties for trademarks or copyright infringements in UAE?

Penalties for trademarks infringements (besides confiscation of goods):
Shall be sentenced to imprisonment and a fine of at least Dh. 5000 (Five Thousand) or either:

  1. Any person who forges a trade mark registered according to law or imitates same in a way misleading the public and any person who uses with bad faith a forged or imitated trade mark.
  2. Any person who places with bad faith on his products a registered trade mark owned by a third party, or uses such mark without right.
  3. Any person who deliberately sells, offers for sale or negotiation or acquires for sale products having a forged, imitated or illegally placed trade mark, the same applies to any person who deliberately provides or offers the provision of services under a forged, imitated or illegally placed trade mark.

Penalties for copyright infringements (besides confiscation of goods):

  1. Financial penalties from 30 000 AED up to 200 000 AED.
  2. Imprisonment for a period not less than 6 months and payment of fine not less than 50 000 AED dirhams.
  3. Deportation from UAE.

- Which laws are regulating trademark and copyright issues in UAE?

For trademarks: United Arab Emirates Federal Law No. 37 of 1992 on Trademarks (as amended by Law No. 19 of 2000 and Law No. 8 of 2002).

For copyright: United Arab Emirates Federal Law No. (7) of the Year 2002 Concerning Copyrights and Neighboring Rights

- Will be protected my rights outside UAE after trademark or copyright registration?

Intellectual property rights registered with a trademark certificate in UAE will be not protected outside the UAE.

Copyright certificate registered in UAE will be protected in whole world - 167 countries-members of Bern convention for the Protection of Literary and Artistic Works.

BENEFITS FROM INTELLECTUAL PROPERTY IN UAE

- How can I find investments for my intellectual property in UAE?

When you want to start new business project in UAE with partners, every member of founders' team should describe the form and money value of their contribution - money, land, equipment or IP.

Usually in investment project in UAE are participating at least 2 parties: author of business idea (often with product or service prototype) and investor, who will finance this project.

And if in case with investor the value of its contribution is clear - there are real money, contract price of equipment or average rent rate of the land/venues, for authors of business ideas and IP-owners is too difficult to prove the real value of their intellectual contribution in UAE.
Therefore - previously capitalized IP-object with concrete money value allows to IP-contributor of the project create the initial financial base for adequate negotiations with future business partners concerning shares distribution in UAE.
Also capitalized IP-works (brands, technologies, etc) in already existing legal entities could be used (instead of money physical assets) for forming the founding /authorized capital in new created daughter companies or any other forms of sub-divisions and affiliated structures in UAE.

- How can I receive bank loan using trademark or copyright as a mortgage in UAE?

The most interesting thing with capitalization is the fact, that valuated IP-assets could be used as a pledge for receiving bank credit or investment loan in UAE.
Wide recognition of brand by customers, high-rated web-sites and mobile applications are representing today real values, and stimulated sales and growth of the business in UAE.
But the most common problem is lack of knowledge by IP-owners - they absolutely do not know how to present their money-generated intangible assets as collateral for receiving the credits from financial institutions or loans from investors in UAE.

- How can I sell trademark or copyright object in UAE?

After increasing value of business through the capitalization of IP-assets owner on case of sale its business to new owner can receive additional profit comparing to selling only physical assets.
According to UAE laws such intangible assets as a corporate/product brand, clients data-base, trade secrets, web-site or mobile application could be sold only if they have properly formalized documents with valid protection of IP-rights.

- How can I increase my profit using trademark or copyright in UAE?

Every successful business project attract not only investors/partners, but also unfair competitors, who want to duplicate efficient working ideas/works and immediately start sales with the aim to quickly pick up the market share and consumers.
In such cases high value of IP-assets (corporate or products brands, package designs, web-site or mobile applications) allows to rightholder receiving increased reimbursements from unfair competitors for IP-rights violations.

- How to create and register license/franchise agreement in UAE?

After achieving sustainable and profitable functioning of business in one city, usually owner of business is trying to create sub-divisions in other regions.
Most efficient ways in this directions are licensing and franchising, while these legal forms of brands' territorial expansion do not need to spend own money for new company registration, buying of equipment and staff recruitment - all these expenses will be covered by franchisee.
And capitalized IP-assets in form of brand value allows to the brand's owner put in the licensing/franchise agreements contract heightened rate of license/franchise fee.
Registration of license/franchise agreement in UAE should be done in the same body who issues appropriate certificate.

- Could I capitalize/return expenses, which were spent for trademark or copyright creation, registration and protection?

Today is a common practice when partner asked about the price of your business. Nice presentations and creative marketing materials are of course important for positive impact on the decision-making person, but afterwards is very difficult to prove your financial sustainability without serious money indicators of current business statement. High-valuated price of business can confirm reliability and confidence of partner.
For capitalization of trademark and copyright you first to receive appropriate certificates and than attract specialists for conducting capitalization (in UAE most successful company in this area is IPBS-center).

- Can I input trademark or copyright in registered founding capital of my company?

Yes, you can increase your founding registered capital of the company on the amount of capitalized intellectual property in form of intangible assets.

Choose first step to protect Your business and intellectual property in UAE

Receive FREE a set of documents
Documents for trademark registration in UAE
click here
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Contact with us

*No spam - 100% guarantee
x
Your online application was successfully received

Your online application was successfully received, our expert will contact with you within 24 hours!


THANK YOU!

Package of documents (PDF):
1. Application form for trademark
2. Application form for copyright
3. Presentation about Intellectual Property in UAE
4. Full list of official and service fees
5. UAE Law on Trademarks
6. UAE Law on Copyrights and Neighboring Rights
Order for FREE expert consultation
Free expert consultation

click here
x
Contact with us

*No spam - 100% guarantee
x
Your online application was successfully received

Your online application was successfully received, our expert will contact with you within 24 hours!


THANK YOU!

Free  consultations with expert/s visit to cliants are available in all Emirates after pre-ordering and approval the expert's time on following topics:
1. Registration of intellectual property (IP)
2. Protection of rights
3. Financial benefits of IP in UAE
4. Investments in IP
Apply for registration your Intellectual Property
Apply for registration of trademark

apply now
x
Your online application was successfully received

Your online application was successfully received, our expert will contact with you within 24 hours!


THANK YOU!

Online form for registration:

1. Brand name, logo
2. Web, soft, mob.app
3. Invention, know-how
4. Music, video
5. Business idea, startups
6. Domain name
7.  Package, shape
8. Other IP-objects