New Trademarks Law in the UAE
The UAE is always keen on protecting the rights of brand owners has taken a step forward by updating their Trademarks law to cover the grey area of the old law. The new Trademarks Law No. 36 of 2021 reflects GCC unified Trademarks law laws and has expanded into surrounding sound, smell, 3D trademarks, and single color. It is one of the most extensive reforms the UAE has done in years.
To protect brand owners, the new law has clearly stated that any trademarks that are identical or similar or an imitation of an already registered or well-known trademark cannot be reported.
The new law has also established a grievances committee that will hear complaints or objections to the decisions of the trademarks office related to issuance or opposition, or cancellations. The committee will be headed by a judge selected by the Ministry of Justice. This will allow the committee to resolve the complaints related to trademarks quicker as the court procedures are time-consuming. The committee's decisions can be appealed directly to the court of appeal instead of the court of the first instance, reducing the time spent on litigation processes further.
The cancellations of trademarks will now be carried out by the ministry of the economy instead of the court, further reducing litigation time.
And the new law prevents geographical indications from being registered if they are similar in some way to an already registered trademark in the country. The GI, as defined by the new law, is "any indications showing that a good is originated from a member country of the world trade organization or in a region or a place in that region if that good's quality, reputation or characteristics are due to its geographical origin."