Design Registration

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In the 21st century, design plays an important role as it defines the visual appearance of an article or a product as people are more attracted to the design or appearance of the product and tend to buy the best design that catches their attention. So let’s understand why visual appearance protection is also important.

What is Industrial Design?
In simple terms, getting protection for the newly created visual design of the products made under the industrial process. The appearance of the product makes the product more appealing, attractive, and distinguishable from other products in the market.  As a result, great designs are important and need to be protected since companies devote their time and money to innovate, produce, and develop new or original products. 
The Design Act of 2000 was enacted to bring the Design Act up to date with international legislation to govern design laws. ‘Industrial Designs,' is also a type of intellectual property. Let's go through the definition of industrial designs, their protection, advantages, period of protection, prerequisites for protection, pertinent case law, design registration and application procedures, piracy of registered designs, and landmark decisions.
Definition of Design under Indian Law
The aesthetics of any product or commodity are protected and registered in India under the Designs Act, 2000 and Designs Rules, 2001, as modified in 2008. Design refers to the features of shapes, patterns, configurations, ornaments, or composition of lines or colors applied to any article, whether in 2 dimensional or 3 dimensional or both forms, by any means or industrial process, whether hand-operated, chemical, or mechanical, separate or combined, that is addressed to and attracted solely by the eye, i.e. tangible, encourages, into Industrial designs, on the other hand, do not protect intangible designs,. 
The Design Act's objective is to preserve an article's "look," therefore it excludes any manner, technique, or principle of manufacture or process of an article or a product. As a result, this Act exclusively protects and registers designs that are purely aesthetic and applied to articles, rather than designs determined by a practical element. 
Industrial designs must be safeguarded to be protected. The following are some elements that must be present in the industrial design to get the protection:
  1. It should be new, unique, and original.
  2. Any publication i.e. intangible (physical) form should not be made available to the public in India or any other country.
  3. Should not be utilized before the filing date or if the registration application is applicable on the priority date.
  4. Significantly different from previous designs or combinations of previous designs.
  5. Public order, morals, and honesty should not be harmed.
  6. It should not damage or harm the security or any law of India.
Following are the elements that are excluded from the scope of the industrial design:
  1. Stamps, maps, books, calendars, papers or forms, certificates, patterns, cards, pamphlets, medals, and a variety of other items that come under the category of artistic or literary works;
  2. Labels, tokens, cards, and cartons are all examples of this.
  3. Any principle or method of item structure or construction.
  4. Any part of a machine
  5. Structures and buildings.
  6. Parts of products that have not been produced and are being offered individually.
  7. Simple changes to an assembly's components in the workshop.
  8. A simple adjustment in the article's size.
  9. Any country's flags, symbols, or signs.
  10. Integrated circuit layout designs.
What is the duration of the Industrial design protection?
The TRIPS Agreement states that protection should last at least ten years. The term can be extended for an additional five years by completing an application for extension together with the required fee.
What are the advantages of protecting the design?
In an aesthetic-driven customer base, the aesthetics of a stylish product can sometimes be as essential as or more important than its utility. As a result, it's essential to keep the design from being copied. Obtaining exclusive rights to a product or commodity with a certain appearance may provide a significant return on investment since it allows the owner of the design to prohibit others from copying a popular design. The following are some of the advantages of design protection:
  • It becomes a source of income
  • Exclusive rights protection
  • Investment Returns
  • Enhances the value of the brand
  • Supports the marketing and commercialization of products
  • Selling unique concepts
 Who is eligible to apply for industrial design protection?
Any person (company, partnership, minor business, and body corporate) or the legal representative or assignee can apply alone or jointly for the registration of a design under Section 5 of the 
Design Act, 2000. Any matter to be entered in the registration is prima facie evidence. Any individual can view the Register of Designs by submitting a request to the Controller and paying the required costs.
Registration and Documentation of the industrial design
Every design registration application is subjected to the Act and Rules, as modified, on a timely basis. Anyone seeking to register a design must submit the following documents to the Patent Office's Design Wing or any of the Patent Office's branch offices in Delhi, Mumbai, or Chennai. The Branch Offices' applications would be forwarded to the Patent Office for processing and prosecution. Under Sections 5 and 44 of the Design Act of 2000, applications are considered in the order in which they are filed.
  • To apply for design registration, the following documents/forms must be submitted:
  • Form 1 of the application
  • Power of Attorney
  • Representation sheets are a crucial document that must be included with the registration application and feature various elements and perspectives of the product that clearly illustrate the fresh and unique design. Photographs, computer images, charts, sketches, or design specimens can all be included on the representation sheets.
  • Details on the types of articles that require design protection
  • Details about the applicant, such as full name, permanent residence, nationality, article title, and advertisement
  • A copy of the priority document that has been certified (if priority is claimed from a foreign application)
  • On a case-to-case basis, some extra documents may be requested by the authority.
  • According to the Locarno Classification, the classes and subclasses of commodities for which registration is requested.
  • The filing fee to be paid by the applicant
What is an infringement of the design? 
Section 22 of the Designs Act of 2000 deals with the infringement of registered designs. Any clear or fraudulent replication of a design that has already been registered without the permission of the owner is illegal. Importation of any material that closely resembles a registered design is also prohibited. Infringement of the design to publishing such articles or exposing terms for sale with knowledge of the unlawful use of the design to them. 
Section 22 also states that if a civil complaint is filed for design infringement, the compensation shall not exceed Rs. 50,000 for each registered design that is infringed upon, or the compensation is set by statute, it can be used as a basis for an interim injunction even before the trial begins.
Hence, industrial designs are protected in India by the Design Act 2000, which also protects small and medium-sized enterprises. Customers are influenced by the product's design, which allows them to recognize the brand name connected with it. It is important to note that everyone should understand the importance of registering their design to protect their design and to avoid duplication.

Required Documents

Acceptable DocumentDocument TypeAdditional Details


You Ask, We Answer

No. Because once the alleged Design i.e., ornamentation is removed only a piece of paper, metal or like material remains and the article referred ceases to exist. Article must have its existence independent of the Designs applied to it.
No. A registered design, the copyright of which has expired cannot be re-registered as started in Designs Act, 2000.
The main object of the Designs Act is to protect new or original designs so created to be applied or applicable to particular article to be manufactured by Industrial Process or means.
As per the designs Act 2000, the registration of a design may be cancelled at any time after the registration of design on a petition for cancellation in form 8 with prescribed fee to the Controller of Designs on the following grounds: • That the design has been previously registered in India or • That it has been published in India or elsewhere prior to date of registration or • The design is not new or original or • Design is not registered or • It is not a design under Clause (d) of Section 2.
The duration of the registration of a design is 10 years from the date of registration. This initial period of registration may be extended by further period of 5 years on an application made in Form-3 accompanied by prescribed fees to the Controller before the expiry of the said initial period of ten years.
As per the Design Act 2000, ‘Design’ means only the features of shape, configuration, pattern or ornament or composition of lines or colour or combination thereof applied to any article whether two dimensional or three dimensional or in both forms, by any industrial process or means, whether manual, mechanical or chemical, separate or combined, which in the finished article appeal to and are judged solely by the eye, but does not include any mode or principle or construction or anything which is in substance a mere mechanical device, and does not include any trade mark, as define in clause (v) of sub-section of Section 2 of the Trade and Merchandise Marks Act, 1958, property mark or artistic works as defined under Section 2(c) of the Copyright Act, 1957.

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