Design Protection in the UK
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Issued on 24th October 2010
A registered design confers a monopoly on the proprietor in that
design. Designs are available for the whole or part of a article.
Protection for your design can be obtained as well in the unregistered
form; that is provided that the design is inter alia original
and non-common place.
This article will briefly outline
unregistered designs and registered designs.
The Copyright, Designs and Patents Act
1988 (CDPA) section 213 provides that a design is a property right
which subsists in accordance with this Part in an original design. A
design means the design of any aspect of the shape or configuration of
the whole or part of an article.
A design right does not subsist in: (a) a
method or principle of construction, (b) features of shape or
configuration of an article which- (i) enable the article to be
connected to or placed in around or against another article so that
either article may perform its function, or (ii) are independent upon
the appearance of another article of which the article is intended by
the designer to form an integral part, or (c) surface decoration.
There is no requirement of registration
for the unregistered design; similar to copyright the unregistered
design will subsist on creation. Though from a practical point of view
the proprietor does not know for certain whether he has an unregistered
Registration is the is a positive step
towards securing your monopoly in your design. Registration is made to
Protection lasts for five years from first
registration and may be renewed for up to 25 years.
It is advisable to register a design
because the registered right is much stronger than the unregistered
right. Unregistered designs last for 10 years. Registered design
litigants do not have to prove that the design has been copies whereas
under unregistered designs you will have to show that the design has
By Paul Bicknell. Paul
is a trainee solicitor specialising in litigation. Paul can be
contacted at email@example.com.
About the Author
Lawdit Solicitors offer services and
advice for litigation, commercial contracts, Intellectual Property and IT legal
agreements. We are experts in commercial law with a heavy emphasis on
Intellectual Property, Internet and e-commerce law. Lawdit is a member of the
International Trademark Association, the Solicitors' Association of Higher Court
Advocates and we are the appointed Solicitors to the largest webdesign
association in the world, the United Kingdom Website Designers Association.
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Article Published/Sorted/Amended on Scopulus 2010-11-02 12:08:27 in Legal Articles