This summer there have already been two major updates to the UAE Trade Mark Office (TMO) practice:

  • from 1 May 2014, a fully notarised and legalised Power of Attorney (POA) must be submitted to the TMO in conjunction with all trade mark applications, renewals, opposition or other actions. It is no longer possible to submit the POA separately within the 60-day window after filing of the trade mark application. This means non-UAE based companies will need to ensure that they have a valid notarised and legalised POA in place to enable them to take prompt action in terms of oppositions, claiming priority under Paris Convention etc.; and
  • the examination process was reformed with effect from 1 June 2014. Previously an examination report could be issued by the TMO detailing any objections that the examiner had with the application and the applicant was free to respond to satisfy the concerns of the examiner. Under the new system this is no longer possible. The TMO may simply issue a decision rejecting or accepting (either unconditionally or with conditions) the registration of a trade mark. As a result, the applicant no longer has the option of dialogue with the TMO and must either accept the decision made, appeal it or submit a new application. It is therefore recommended that any trade mark applications correspond exactly with the TMO's Arabic translation of the 10th Edition of the Nice Classification guide.