Before applying for a design protection, search our design register to make sure a similar design has not been registered. In the UK, you don’t have to keep your design a secret before applying for protection if you apply within 12 months from when it was made public. Application can be done by individuals or with the help of an IP attorney.
- Provide the right image of your product. Make sure the image is identical to the product that would be put out in the marketplace. Clear photographs of the product are recommended.
- Fill out the application on-line or send by post. Applying on-line is cheaper.
- You can register a single design or a collection of designs in one application.
- A designer examiner will check that your application meets the required criteria.
- In about 2 months, if successful, you will get a report and a design certificate.
Your design cannot:
- Be Offensive
- Make use of protected emblems (Olympic rings or royal crown)
- Be an invention
- Be a description of how a product works.
Designs are territorial and would provide protection only in the countries where applications are made and granted. A registered design can be sold as an asset with financial value or licensed. It would be difficult to sell an unregistered design to potential buyers. In addition, Registered designs provide tax incentives. A business can claim research & development tax credits on the cost invested in developing new products.