In our previous update, we reported on a change in practice for Powers of Attorney in the UAE, that has a significant impact on rights holders. This practice change was initially due to come into effect on 1 April 2014. However, the UAE Trade Marks Office has since issued a further notice stating that it will now come into effect on 1 May 2014.

Although the effective date has changed, no other elements of the original notification have been amended. Accordingly, this practice change will have an impact on any business that has a deadline with the UAE Trade Marks Office from 1 May onwards which requires a Power of Attorney to be submitted.

Recent publications for opposition

On 1 April 2014, the UAE Trade Marks Office issued the latest Official Gazette with trade mark applications published for opposition purposes. This is one of the largest Gazettes ever issued by the Trade Marks Office, with more than 4,000 trade marks published.

The non-extendable deadline to oppose applications published in this Gazette will be 30 April 2014. For an opposition filed on or before this date, it will be possible to file the opposition without a legalised Power of Attorney.  We still await confirmation from the Trade Marks Office as to  when the legalised Power of Attorney will then need to be filed. As things currently stand, this will be the last Gazette where it will be possible to oppose an application without a legalised Power of Attorney.

However, as of 1 May 2014, all trade mark applications, renewals, recordals, oppositions and other actions filed with the UAE Trade Marks Office must be accompanied by a fully notarised and legalised Power of Attorney.

As of yet, the Trade Marks Office has still not announced any transitional provisions.

Jon Parker