About Licensing

Why is licensing important?

The University of California, Irvine is recognized as one of the world’s premier institutions of higher learning and research. UC Irvine’s name, trademarks, logos, and symbols (trademarks) have come to be identified with its reputation, traditions, and values.

The Office of Trademarks and Licensing works to protect UC Irvine trademarks and enhance UC Irvine’s image by actively monitoring use of trademarks, enforcing university and campus trademark policies, and ensuring that UC Irvine receives appropriate value for use of its name and trademarks by others.

Who needs a license to use UC Irvine trademarks?

A vendor producing goods that bear UC Irvine trademarks must be licensed. By licensing vendors, UC Irvine regulates the quality, consistency, and appropriateness of use of its trademarks on goods. Licensing also ensures that vendors comply with environmental, health, and safety laws, and adhere to fair, humane labor standards, including paying workers a living wage.

UC Irvine will take action to prohibit unauthorized use of its trademarks and, if necessary, will take legal action against any individual or organization using its trademarks without authorization or distributing unlicensed merchandise.

Can UC Irvine trademarks be used on websites and in advertisements?

Strategic Communications oversees the internal use of the UC Irvine name and trademarks in print and electronic publications for conformance with campus policies and UC Irvine Graphics Standards. All other requests to use the UC Irvine name and trademarks in print or electronic publications must receive prior approval from Strategic Communications.

When are royalties charged?

Royalties are charged when a trademark is licensed to a commercial vendor for use on a product for resale. Royalties are usually not assessed when UC Irvine trademarks are used in connection with campus goods and services, placed on merchandise for internal use, given away or resold to support a campus program or initiative.

How should possible misuse of trademarks be reported?

UC Irvine is committed to protecting and preserving its trademark rights, as failure to do so could result in the loss of those rights. UC Irvine will take action to prohibit unauthorized use of its trademarks, including, if necessary, legal action against any individual or organization using UC Irvine trademarks without authorization or distributing unlicensed merchandise. Please contact us regarding any possible trademark misuse.

Licensing Guidelines

Use of University of California, Irvine trademarks is governed by university and campus policies, including the UCI Policy: 700-20 Policy on Use of University Name and Seals, Campus Names and Seal and Trademarks, the Code of Student Conduct, and these guidelines:

Merchandise bearing UCI trademarks must be purchased from a Licensed Vendor, should be of high quality in design, material and workmanship, and must be of such style and appearance as to have a positive impact on UCI’s reputation.

UCI trademarks may not be altered in any way. All uses of UCI trademarks on products must incorporate the appropriate trademark designation symbols of ™ or ®, as specified in the UCI Art Sheet , and must comply with the UCI Brand and Visual Identity Standards.

UCI trademarks may not be used to suggest or imply UCI’s endorsement of other organizations, companies, products, services, political parties or views, or religious organization or beliefs.

UCI will not approve the use of its trademarks in connection with certain types of items and designs, including but not limited to those that are:

  • Alcohol, tobacco, marijuana, illegal drug, or gambling related
  • Discriminatory, hateful, demeaning or degrading against any person or group
  • Inherently dangerous, including weapons, firearms, or explosives
  • Present an unacceptable risk of liability
  • Sexually suggestive, obscene or profane
  • Harmful to the mission or image of UCI or impugns other universities

UCI trademarks may not be used in conjunction with the name or trademark of any other entity without the prior written permission of UCI and the other entity. Each entity’s trademark must be separate and distinct from each other and must not overshadow or diminish the other entity’s trademark.

UCI trademarks are the exclusive property of The Regents of the University of California and are protected by California state law, common law rights, and by federal and international intellectual property law. Unauthorized use of UCI trademarks is subject to civil and criminal penalties. UCI reserves the right to take appropriate action when confronted with unauthorized use of its trademarks. Such actions may include confiscation of goods, financial penalties, and legal action.

Code of Conduct

The University of California (UC) supports humane and enforceable labor standards in the manufacture of products bearing its name. In August 1988, UC became one of the first universities in the country to adopt a code of conduct for its trademark licensees. In March 2017, the code was revised and the current UC code requires licensees and their contractors to pay a living wage, comply with environmental, health and safety laws, and to allow freedom of association. Under the revised code, all names and addresses of the licensee’s contractor and manufacturing plants will be made public. The code can be found at: The University of California Code of Conduct for Trademark Licensees.

To advise UC on the issues of sweatshops around the world and to assist in the monitoring and enforcement of its code, UC is affiliated with the Fair Labor Association and the Worker Rights Consortium.