Design rights may offer protection to your product design. A design right protects the appearance of your product. The protection of this appearance concerns the lines, contours, colours, shape, texture and/or materials of the design. The owner of a design right can oppose to the use of a product in which his design is incorporated or on which his design is applied.
How do I obtain design right protection?
A design right has to registered in the relevant design registry. For designs valid in the Benelux, this is the registry of the Benelux Office for Intellectual Property (BOIP). Designs valid in the EU require registration in the registry of the European Union Intellectual Property Office (EUIPO).
In addition, EU design law provides limited protection to unregistered Community designs. The term of protection for such unregistered Community design is three years from the date on which the design was first made available to the public. In addition the protection for an unregistered Community design is limited to the copying thereof.
To be valid for registration, a design must be considered new and have an individual character.
How can I use design right protection?
The owner of a design right can prevent any third party, not having his consent, from using his design. Such protection requires that the designs at hand share the same overall impression on an informed user. In such comparison, the design as registered should be taken into account.
Our IP attorneys have thorough experience in relation to the protection of designs. We are keen to be your trusted advisor for all your questions relating thereto.