To protect a design from being copied, the creator will automatically have a ‘design right’ which will protect the design for either 10 years after it was first sold, or 15 years after it was created, whichever came first.
What is a design?
A design is taken to mean ‘The appearance of the whole or a part of a product resulting from the features of the lines, contours, colours, shape, texture and/or materials of the product itself and/or its ornamentation’.
Why should I register a design?
By registering a design, you will be better protecting it from being copied, reproduced or distributed without your permission. To register a design, it must comply with the regulations, including:
- The design must be new
- Must not be offensive, or graphic in detail
- Must not use protected emblems or flags
- Must not be an invention (for inventions, please see our patents page here)
You may submit up to seven illustrations with your application and these may be drawings, photographs or prints that show what you want to register.
These illustrations should:
- Show the design exactly as it appears.
- Be either photographs, line drawings, computer-aided design or rendered.
- Show the design against a plain background.
- No details should be hidden by shadow or reflections
- All relevant views of the design must be shown, for example front or back view
- It must not contain measurements or other technical information
- No other objects, or your hand, should be shown
- If the application is being submitted by post, the illustrations should be on plain A4 paper.
What happens after a design right is registered?
The Intellectual Property Office will examine the application and respond within one month of submission. If no objections are raised, the design will be registered immediately unless you wish to defer it. If objections are raised, there is a two-month period for a response. A hearing can be requested if you think the application has been dealt with unfairly or if you disagree with the decision.
For more information about JMR Solicitors’ services for businesses, contact us or call 0161 491 3933 for a guaranteed response.