In the following article, we address some of the most frequently asked design-related issues, including “how much does it cost to register a design?”.
Whenever we talk about design in our lectures, we frequently learn with disappointment that participants are unaware of the relevant legal framework. As a result, we thought it would be useful to explain how to protect a collection or a work that incorporate an original design. After all, without registration, creations risk quickly falling into the public domain.
We have created a new interactive tool to obtain a quote on how much it costs to register a design. If you want to get a quote now, click on the red button (the procedure takes less than two minutes and the quote is immediate).
WHAT IS DESIGN?
Aesthetics are very important as they add value to the product, making it more attractive. The European Union Intellectual Property Office (EUIPO) explains that: “a design is the appearance of a product: its shape, patterns and colours.”
We have created a new interactive tool to get a customised design registration quote. If you want immediate access to the quote tool, click here.
WHO CAN REGISTER A DESIGN?
Many designers disregard registration altogether, thus jeopardising the possibility of obtaining repayment for their design efforts. When a contract with a commissioning company already exists, the Design is usually filed by the company, including the name of the Designer in the application.
Designers who do not want to assign the exploitation rights to the Design in full, register the Design under their own name. Through ownership of the registration, the Designer retains formal ownership of the Design, merely licensing it by contract against payment of a royalty.
Ultimately, the design can be registered by either the company or the designer. The registrant will formally own the design (a bit like cars at the Public Vehicle Register).
A patent gives the registrant an exclusive right to the design, preventing anyone from using it without their consent.
If you would like to access our new interactive tool to calculate a quote for registering a Design or Collection model, click here.
HOW MUCH DOES IT COST TO REGISTER A DESIGN?
When you believe you have created a particularly original, iconic or innovative design, only registration can be a valid means of protection. Even more so, registration is an optimal tool when the designer is a beginner. Thanks to registration, the designer will be able to present his or her design to companies or investors without fear of the design being copied. For in the event of plagiarism of the design or unauthorised exploitation, the owner will also be entitled to damages. As mentioned above, the registration of a design certifies ownership of the design.
We have created a new interactive tool to get a quote to find out how much it costs to register a design. If you want to get the quote now, click on the red button (the procedure takes less than two minutes and the quote is immediate).
WHEN CAN A DESIGN BE CLAIMED AS COPIED?
In order to register a design, it must be ‘new’ and the design must possess so-called “individual character”.
According to the law, a design has individual character if the overall impression it creates in the informed user differs from the overall impression created in that user by any design that has previously been disclosed. Furthermore, in ascertaining individual character, the degree of freedom that the designer has enjoyed in developing the design is taken into consideration.
In other words, in each category of products, the assessment of novelty and likelihood of confusion (interference) between products varies according to the abuse or uniqueness of certain shapes. Consequently, to make this type of judgement, the law requires one to identify oneself as a particular subject, an “informed user” of that specific category of products.
Design protection actions and design registration are just some of our services in design law.
WHAT DOES A PERSON WHO DOES NOT REGISTER A DESIGN RISK?
If it is true that the protection offered by design can be combined with that offered by the regulations protecting copyright, it is equally true that Italian copyright law, in Article 2 no. 10, restricts protection to those “…works of industrial design that present in themselves creative character and artistic value”.
The presence of this burdensome requirement (artistic value) makes copyright protection substantially ineffective for the protection of designers’ creations. In this respect, it is crucial not to forget to define a protection strategy that does not rely solely on copyright. At least until the community acknowledges the works of designers, considering them works of art.
The best protection for designs and collections of industrial products dedicated to the market is undoubtedly that of design patents. There is also protection in the European territory for those who do not register a design, but it only lasts three years from the first presentation of the products to the public. Those who do not register the design, as well as having to struggle to prove that they are the true author, will see it fall into the public domain within a very short time, thereby legitimising others’ exploitation of their creations.
We have created a new interactive tool to get a customised quote on design registration. If you want to access the automated quote tool, click here.