Design Patent Protection 2022

Design patent protection is a form of legal protection granted to the decorative design of an article of manufacture, They are a type of industrial design right. Some examples that are covered by design patent protection are furniture, jewelry, beverage containers, and computer icons.


What Is a Design Patent Protection ?

A design patent protection is a form of the legal protection of the unique visual qualities of a manufactured item. A design patent protection may be granted if the product has surface ornamentation, unique configuration, or both. In other words, a design patent provides protection for the ornamental design of something that has functional utility.


This means that things that are substantially similar to something covered by design patent protection may not be made, used, or imported into the country. In certain countries, design patent protection for designs may be obtained for a fee and by fulfilling basic registration requirements.


Utility patents are more expensive than design patent protection, also the low probability of rejection makes a design patent a source of attraction for startups who are seeking low-cost, fast protection, so a design patent would be a perfect choice If the appearance of your product or concept is unique.


Why is design patent protection important for your business?

Protecting your intellectual property rights by design patent protection will provide both financial and brand security for your business. It will also prevent others from getting profit from your original designs without your permission accordingly it will raise your market share.

Advantages of design patent protection :

  • Design patent protection covers commercially valuable and distinctive products.
  • Effective tool to defend against counterfeiters. 
  • Allow for protection of graphical user interfaces.   
  • A design patent is Less expensive than a utility patent.
  • pendency of design patent protection is 20 months compared to 24 months for a utility application. And it can be shortened to two months upon paying a surcharge and submitting a prefiling search.
  • A huge percentage nearly 60% of design patent protection application cases are allowed without objection compared with about only 10% of utility protection applications.
  • Design patent provides a cause of action against infringements in the Federal Court. The patent owner can seek treble damages and attorney fees for intentional infringement.
  • A design patent provides can enforce rights through private mechanisms such as third-party seller platforms.


Industrial design protection does not replace utility patents sometimes they are both needed for the same product if it is enjoying ornamentally and functionality. If the innovation is focused on a new function, the founder should file a utility patent application. It is important to consult an IP Services company like Baiant IP about the protection strategy.

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The difference between design patent protection and copyrights :

Copyright applies to the aesthetic properties of objects and generally non-utilitarian articles (articles that exist only for their appearance and not for their utility) like paintings, songs, and sculptures. In some cases, copyrights are applied to utilitarian articles only if the aesthetic features of the article can exist independently of the article, For Example, a sculpture that is used as the base of a lamp.


Design patents are used to protect new decorative elements of a utility item where the copyrights can’t. if the aesthetic elements cannot be separated from the other object, For example, a design patent could protect the appearance of a CPU case while copyright law cant. 


if the aesthetic nature of a feature actually gives it utilitarian motives (certain automotive parts designed to reduce wind resistance), then those features are only protected by a utility patent. 


The difference between design patent protection and utility patents :

A design patent protection should not be baffled with a utility patent, Both design and utility patents may be obtained on an article if the invention obtains utility and ornamental appearance. a utility patent protects how an article is used, while a design patent protects the way an article looks. While utility and design patent protection provides legally separate protection, it’s hard to separate the utility and ornamental of an article. Some articles may possess both functional and ornamental characteristics.


The time span is also considered a key difference between them, design patent protection may last 14-15 years, depending on its filing while a utility patent stands for 20 years and requires periodic fees, while a design patent does not require those fees. 

read more about Difference Between The Utility Model And Patent Protection

What does a design patent not protect ?

function or any utilitarian features of an invention are not protected by design patent protection, some items may have both ornamental and functional features design patent provides no protection for functionality, Even if the product acquired a protection for design patent for a product that is primarily functional it will not stop future infringement on functionality so that functional feature is not protected by design patent protection. 


Design patent eligibility :

You need to think first about whether the design is suitable for patent protection. And meet the following criteria first:

  1. The surface of the object has special and unique ornamentation.
  2. The structure of the item has a unique design.


The design must also be:

  1. Completely different from the prior art.
  2. Not obviously derived from other designs.
  3. Visible when the item is employed for its intended use.

after knowing about protection for Design Patent .. you can read more on baianat intellectual property

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Elements of a Design Patent protection application :

Design patent application should include the following :

  1. The name of the applicant 
  2. Brief description of the nature and intended use of the article in which the design is incorporated
  3. The title of the design
  4. Cross-reference to related applications 
  5. Statement regarding federally sponsored research or development.
  6. Description of the figure(s) of the drawing
  7. Feature description
  8. A single claim
  9. Drawings or photographs
  10. Executed oath or declaration
  11. A filing fee, search fee, and examination fee are also required.

Companies sometimes make these mistakes when they apply for a design patent protection:

  1. Not doing patent research
  2. Not protecting how the product works
  3. Not including specifics and details 
  4. Not to ask for help from a lawyer


How to avoid infringing your design patent ?

It’s all about the roadblock theory as broad as it could be as difficult It could be for your competitors to go around your barrier. Your utility patent is the roadblock that generally provides you with a broader barrier. Design patents provide you with narrower ones, So to broaden your rights, you need to fill both utility and design patent applications. 


If your product lacks unique functional features but comes in various designs, then consider filing multiple design patent applications. You also might need to Prioritize what you believe will be the most popular designs for protection and how the competitors might change the appearance of your items and include it in papers too.


It may be easy for competitors to create different-looking products to avoid infringement With only one design patent protection, it can become much harder to design around your patent rights, With a portfolio of design patents, Designing applications on each unique part of an overall assembly sound good as you will have additional backup weapons to use against competitors who have copied only certain portions of the overall development.


One of the well-known Patent Infringement: Is that Apple has often successfully defended its patents against Samsung when it copies its designs for the iPhone and was awarded more than $900 million.

read more about How to avoid patent infringement


Design Patent protection examples :

Some examples of design patent include ornamental designs on jewelry, automobiles, or furniture, icons, fonts, and screen layouts for apps and software programs. as well as packaging container, typing fonts, and computer icons such as emojis. The curvy Coca-Cola bottle and the Statue of Liberty are  Some famous design patent objects.


Thinking of filing a design patent protection application ?

Contact Baianat IP for design patent protection to avoid the risk of infringement. Get the advantage of our free, fast, satisfying & efficient consultation.

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