Design protection deals with the outward appearance of a product, its aesthetics; its shape, texture, contours etc. A patent covers how the product works; what it does and how it does it, amongst other things.

Designs are automatically protected by unregistered design rights, which are free and last for up to 15 years. However, to protect a design’s individual character, you need to apply for a registered design. This has an associated cost, but lasts for up to 25 years and affords you greater protection than an unregistered design.

As with all intellectual property, designs can be treated like normal property. You can sell, loan and license designs to third parties and the law protects you from their theft.

Contact us and we will advise you on what kind of protection your invention requires.