The visual appearance of a manufactured product can be one of your greatest commercial assets in setting yourself apart from the competition. Registering the design of your product can prevent others from using the design without your permission.
You can register the design of your product if it has an industrial or commercial use, and has a visual appearance that is both new and distinctive. This includes the shape, configuration, pattern or ornamentation that creates a unique appearance when applied to your product. A registered design doesn't protect how your product feels, what it's made of or how it works.
For instance, toy building blocks, Speedos® and folding chairs all have registered designs due to their unique appearance.
Under the Designs Act 2003, registration will protect your design for up to 10 years.
If you think you've got a distinctive product design that should be registered, search IP Australia's databases to ensure it hasn't already been registered.
What to do...
- Read about designs on the IP Australia website.
- Read through IP Australia's designs application process before you apply.
- Search IP Australia's designs database.
- Find information on intellectual property in your state or territory.