Design Rights / Design Registration / Design Patent
Design rights relate to the visual appearances of an industrially produced article. When purchasing a certain product or commodity, the customer is not only influenced by the practical utility and efficiency, but also by its appearance. Some may be attracted towards the artistic nature of certain product and some may be attracted towards a product whose design is strange and bizarre. An article may be chosen by the mere fact that it is very catchy to the eyes. It is therefore profitable on the part of the manufacturer to design a product in such a way that it attracts the customers. For this purpose the manufacturer may have invested substantial time, effort and funds to create such design.
A design to be registered must be of some shape, configuration, pattern or ornamentation or composition of lines or colors applied to such article in any form by any industrial process Similar to other intellectual properties, a design can be registered only if it is new or original and has not been published previously. A combination of previous known design can be registered if the combination produces a new visual effect. Colors may form a part of design but the colors by itself cannot constitute a subject matter of the design.
An owner of a design is granted with the following rights
- The Right to exclusive use of design.
- Right to protect the design from piracy.
Term of Design Registration
In India, the term of a Design is Ten years from the date of filing the Application and additional Five years of renewal and no maintenance fee to be paid. During this period, the Patentee is entitled to use patented product for commercial gain. On the expiry of the term, the design becomes a public property.