Product design registration

What is product design and what it protects

Let's work together to build a comprehensive design protection strategy for your products

The importance of design

What is industrial product design and why is it protected

What is design?

The term "design" refers to the aesthetic features that distinguish a product in the marketplace. These features can cover either the aesthetic form of a product or the design or pattern that is reproduced on a surface.

The European standard refers to design as "the appearance of the whole or a part of the product as resulting, in particular, from the characteristics of the lines, contours, colors, shape, surface texture and/or materials of the product itself and/or its ornamentation".

Why protect it?

By registering a design, you can prevent it from being copied or imitated by competitors, allowing you to stand out in the market and strengthen the placement of your products.

It is well known that a successful design helps to increase the distinctiveness of products in the market and consequently increase the value of the company.

We assist you in registering and protecting your designs

Design registration plays a central role in fully enhancing the value of your products.

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We support you in the design registration phase and verify that your design has all the requirements for registrability.

product design registration | design registration | protect design

We conduct thorough prior art searches on the databases of the relevant offices to verify the existence of any prior rights of third parties.

product design registration | design registration | protect design
An important specification

Single design registration and multiple design registration

When registering a design, it is necessary to specify whether you are interested in proceeding with a single filing or multiple filing.

Single design filing

By means of the single filing application, the owner applies for the registration of only one design.

Multiple design filing

The design regulations also provide for the possibility of registering up to 100 designs/models belonging to the same class of products through a single filing, consequently allowing for significant savings.

To establish whether a product belongs to a particular class, it is necessary to examine the Locarno Classification, which is the international classification system for industrial designs administered by the World Intellectual Property Organization (WIPO).
When applying for multiple design filing, it is therefore essential to indicate precisely the products and class of product to which the design relates.

We can of course assist you in identifying the correct product class of your products for better design protection.

Stay protected everywhere

Italian design, European design and International design

Identifying the type of application to file is an essential factor in protecting designs within the geographical area in which you intend to operate.

Italian design

In the case of an Italian / national design, the application for registration must be filed with the Italian Patent and Trademark Office (UIBM). The registered design is valid for 5 years from the date of filing of the application and is renewable up to a maximum of 25 years.

European/Community design

The "Community Design" allows with the filing of a single application to obtain a design valid within the entire territory of the European Union.
This application must be filed with the European Union Intellectual Property Office (EUIPO).

The European design is then a single title that produces effects and which is valid in all countries of the European Union. 

product design registration | design registration | protect design
product design registration | design registration | protect design

International design

The "international design" allows with the filing of a single application to obtain a design to be valid in the 94 signing countries of the Hague Agreement. Here is the link to the adhering states.
Filing of the international design must be done with the World Intellectual Property Organization (WIPO) Office; as part of this procedure, you will need to choose the Hague Agreement countries in which you intend to protect the design.

Design registration procedures are complex and therefore require the assistance of an expert in the field in order to avoid incurring irregularities that could delay the entire process or even lead to the non-granting of the requested design, resulting in a waste of resources.

How to register a design

We can assist you in registering your design by supporting you from the first steps of analysis to evaluate its registrability criteria, such as novelty and individual character. We identify, based on the nature of your business, the most effective method of protection and proceed with drafting and completing the application for registration.

We also defend your designs both before the relevant offices and in court if copies or counterfeits of them are found. We support you in protecting your assets.

A relevant difference

Unregistered design and registered design

A design may benefit from a certain degree of protection even when it is not registered; in such cases it is referred to as an "unregistered design." In fact, a form of protection is provided for all those unregistered European designs lasting 3 years from the date of disclosure or presentation to the public. The owner of an unregistered design has the option to proceed later with the registration of the same, but always within the limit of 12 months from the first disclosure.

The main difference between registered and unregistered design is that the former is valid and effective until proven otherwise, while for the latter the existence and validity must be proven by the owner.

In fact, the design registration certificate is sufficient to prove its existence and validity, therefore the burden to challenge its validity will be on the other party. This is different with regard to the unregistered design since in this case the burden of proving its validity and existence is on its owner and not on the other party.

It can therefore be understood how, also from the evidentiary point of view, it is certainly advisable to proceed with the registration of one's design in order to obtain more comprehensive protection in case of legal proceedings.

Patent an idea? Yes but careful!

The world of patents is articulate and the procedures to patent an invention may, at first sight, seem too complex. Don’t let this be an obstacle: choose always to protect your ideas.

For 70 years we have offered consultancy services to entrepreneurs and enterprises, and we took care of their inventions.

European patent with unitary effect

The European patent with unitary effect allows, with the payment of a single fee, to simultaneously obtain patent protection in 25 EU countries participating in the initiative.

Patent and principle of territoriality

On the basis of the principle of territoriality, a national patent has effect within the state that granted it. European patents or international patents.


Let’s clear up some misunderstandings

Do you have any specific questions?
Contact us now. Our Team will give you all the information you are looking for!

In both cases an exterior, non-technical element of the product is protected. “Model” means the three-dimensional (3D) form of an object, while "design" means any two-dimensional (2D) element.

At the European level, the registration procedure is very quick. In fact, if no irregularities are found in the submitted application for registration, the design is published (i.e. made known) after 1 week from the filing date, with issuance of the relevant certificate after about 2 weeks.

As for Italian designs, registration times are generally longer and can take up to 8 months from the filing date.

Yes. Design renewal must be done every 5 years, up to a maximum of 25 years from the date of registration. After the 25-year period, the design becomes public domain.

Yes, designs can be assigned, transferred or licensed. In such cases, it is necessary to rely on an IP expert to draft the relevant contracts.

Contact us

Write us and we will contact you as soon as possible by a professional of our firm that will be ready to advise you on the best way to protect your intellectual property.

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