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How to Check the Trademark Availability for Registration in UAE in 2023?


Over time, trademarks have become synonymous with the company name, and you no longer need to know the name of a company to identify it. Imagine the bitten apple shape that Apple uses as its logo, the swoosh logo that Nike highlights on all of its products, Google search engine, and Amazon written in a way depicting the absolute message that they sell everything from A to Z.

UAE is a country known for luxury living, the fastest growing economy, and is now on the path to becoming one of the world’s commercial hubs.

The number of brands, eventually, has grown exponentially in the wake of this commercialisation. Therefore, people find it difficult to decide which trademark to use for their service business or brand. Here’s our complete guide on how to check the trademark availability for trademark registration in the UAE.

What is a trademark?

A trademark is a word, design, or symbol distinguishing a product from others. It is considered part of intellectual property rights and an essential element of any business or brand, as it helps business and industrial property owners create brand recognition and consumer trust.

There are three main types of trademarks that may be registered in the UAE: service marks, certification marks, and collective membership marks. Service marks are used to identify the services of a company, certification marks are used to certify the quality of goods or services, and collective membership marks are used to identify the members of a particular organisation.

What is trademark registration in the UAE?

Trademark registration is a legal process that grants exclusive rights to individuals and businesses to use and protect their marks within the UAE.

What are the Laws governing trademark registration in the UAE?

The primary law that regulates trademarks in the UAE is the Federal Law on Trademarks (No. 36 of 2021), as read together with its Regulation. In addition, the subsidiary law of the Dubai International Financial Centre provides for the Intellectual Property Law DIFC Law No. 4 of 2019. This trademark law establishes the legal framework for trademark registration services and provides guidelines on the requirements for registration, examination, opposition, and enforcement.

They grant exclusive rights to trademark owners to use their business names and rights of trademarks to UAE non-nationals, mostly those who perform commercial or industrial activities.

Who can register a trademark in the UAE?

According to the UAE laws, the following persons can file for registration – any natural and artificial persons practising in UAE who own a trademark or have the legal right to use it can apply for registration. This includes individuals and other artificial persons such as companies, partnerships, and other legal entities.

To file an application, the applicant business owner must have a real and effective presence in the UAE through a physical presence or a legal representative. Foreign entities and individuals who do not have a presence in the UAE can also register their marks through an appointed local agent or representative to act on their behalf. The local agent or representative must be a UAE national or a company wholly owned by UAE nationals.

Which Trademarks can be registered in the UAE?

Examples of UAE-registered trademarks include word marks, device marks, shape marks, colour marks, sound marks and others.

A trademark must also meet the UAE registration conditions, including: – distinctiveness, non-descriptiveness, non-deceptiveness and non-contravention.

Additionally, if you wish to register a trademark in UAE, it must not contain any of the following as these are certain limitations identified by UAE: 

  • Violation of public morals and religious public symbols;
  • Religions Public symbols (such as flags);
  • Symbols like Red Cross and Red Crescent; 
  • Name or title of the third party; and 
  • Parties Direct translations from other famous brands.

There may be additional limitations to what you can include, which you can find out by contacting the Ministry of Economy.

Can a foreigner register a trademark in UAE?

Yes. The UAE has a well-established law system for registering trademarks, which protects national and international trademarks.

Foreigners can register their trademarks in the UAE through the UAE Ministry of Economy’s Trademark Department or hire an attorney to handle the registration process.

However, Service business foreigners who wish to register in the UAE must have a registered business presence in the country, i.e. they must either have a physical office in the UAE or be registered with a free zone or offshore company.

Most Common Types of Trademark Searches in the UAE

The most common types of searches in the UAE are:

Preliminary search to check trademark availability

It determines whether a trademark is available for use and registration and can be done through the UAE Trademark Office’s database.

Full Search

It is a more comprehensive search conducted by a professional search company. It involves searching the UAE Trademark Office’s database and other sources, such as trade directories, domain name registries, and social media platforms

Similarity Search

It is conducted to identify existing trademarks similar to the desired trademark in terms of their visual or phonetic characteristics.

Trademark Watching

this involves monitoring the UAE Trademark Office’s database for any new trademark applications or registrations that may conflict with an existing trademark.

UAE Trademark Registration With the Ministry of Economy

For trademark registration in Dubai, you will need to follow the trademark registration process set by the UAE Ministry of Economy. Here are the steps to follow in trademark registration steps in the UAE; –

Conduct a trademark search

To ensure that the trademark is not already in use, registered, or in the registration process, you can search the UAE Trademark Office online database. However, the online database may not include trademarks not registered with the trademark office or well-known trademarks.

Preparing and submitting trademark application:

Trademark registration entails filling out a trademark application form with the Ministry of Economy via its website on the ‘Services’ section of the homepage. The trademark application form will then be uploaded together with the required documents required, such as trademark logo, priority document and copy of license on the Ministry of Economy website.

The necessary documents include:

  • Trademark logo
  • Copy of trade license power
  • Power of attorney
  • Passport copy
  • Priority documents
  • Listing any goods or services you want to be protected under this trademark registration in UAE

Pay the trademark Registration Fees

After the uploads, pay the required fees. The official fees can be affected by the number of trademarks and the classes to be registered. It is, therefore, advisable to confirm the amounts before commencing the application process.

Review of the trademark application

After submission, the application will undergo a review process where its completeness and accuracy is checked. The review also assesses whether the trademark is eligible for registration by considering factors such as distinctiveness, non-descriptiveness, prohibited content and compliance with relevant legal requirements.

Publication of the trademark

Once the application is approved, the ministry economy will publish it in two local newspapers or two Arabic-language newspapers. This allows for a period of opposition, during which any interested party may oppose the trademark registration.

Issuance of the trademark registration certificate

If there are no oppositions or if any oppositions are resolved in your trademark design favour, you will receive a trademark registration certificate. This registration certificate gives you exclusive rights to use your trademark in the UAE. The trademark certificate is valid for 10 years from the application filing date. The official certification shall include the following:

  • Registration number
  • Date of the application form
  • Name of the business
  • Owner’s name
  • The trademark
  • A description of your product, goods and services

UAE Trademark registration fee requirements

How much does it cost to register a trademark in Dubai?

To have your trademark registered in the UAE, you will need to pay some necessary fees to facilitate the process. The fees can vary on a case by case basis depending on several factors, such as the type of application and the number of classes of goods and services covered in other marks. Some of these fees include:

Search fees: a fee of 350 AED is paid in order to conduct a trademark search.

Filing fee: this is the initial fee of AED750, which is paid when submitting a trademark application.

Publication fee: publishing the application in the official journal and two local newspapers also attracts additional costs. The fee is AED 750.

Registration fee: a registration fee of AED 5,000 is paid to register a trademark.

How long does it take to register a trademark in UAE?

The registration takes five or six months. The registration of the UAE trademark covers 7 Arab emirates: Abu-Dhabi, Dubai, Sharjah, Ras Al-Khaimah, Ajman Fujaira and Umm al-qai. Applicants may choose not to register at seven emirates, any other Emirates or other countries.

Trademark Validity in the UAE

Trademark registration’s validity in the UAE is 10 years from the application filing date. To maintain validity, the trademark owner must use it in commerce for the goods or services it is registered for.

Failure to use the trademark continuously for approximately 5 years may result in the cancellation of the registration.

Trademark renewal in the UAE

Trademark owners can renew their trademark registration in the UAE every 10 years by applying for the renewal procedure through the ministry of economy, which is the competent authority overseeing all UAE registrations. When the validity of the trademark registration ends, a renewal must be filed within three months from its expiration. However, for each month you delay renewing your trademark in UAE, you will have to pay a fine of AED 1,000.

On the Ministry of Economy website, after selecting ‘Trademarks’ from the services page, select Modification and maintenance services. Thereafter, choose ‘Trademark Renewal’ from the drop-down list. Here, you will be asked to submit your old registration certificate. After successfully submitting the form, the registration shall be renewed within thirty days.

How to cancel your trademark registration in UAE

You can do so by visiting the Ministry of Economy website. On the ‘Trademarks’ page, there is a service under Modification and Maintenance Services called ‘Cancel Registered Trademark By Owner Request’. After paying a cancellation fee of AED 1500, you will need to publish an announcement of the cancellation in two local Arabic-language newspapers, after which the process will be complete.

Trademark Infringement in the UAE

Trademark infringement in the UAE is a violation of intellectual property rights that occurs when there is unauthorised use of a registered trademark by someone.

Under the UAE Trademark laws and Criminal law, trademark infringements are criminal offences and can attract a fine of not less than AED 5,000 and/or imprisonment for one to three years. 


A trademark search is vital before filing a trademark as it ensures that a similar or same mark is not already used. However, sometimes such marks are not registered. In this situation, one must search through other sources to check whether the goods and services of the existing non-registered trademark do not apply to the same trademark as yours.

UAE has given certain limitations while filing a trademark. Therefore, one must always be careful while filing a trademark. If one doesn’t do a thorough Trademark Search, they may end up infringing the existing trademark. To be on the safer side, always consult with a trademark attorney. 

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