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There is no International Design Patent, but a International Design Registration.
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An industrial design constitutes the ornamental or aesthetic aspect of an article. A design may consist of three-dimensional features (such as the shape), two-dimensional features (such as a surface or patterns), or one-dimensional features (such as a line or color).
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Design is where function meets form and is an important aspect of intellectual property protection. Industrial design is one of the key factors that attracts us to a product, or leads us to prefer using one product over another.  Industrial designs are what make a product attractive and appealing, ergonomic, define use experience, and more; hence, they add to the commercial value of a product and increase its marketability.
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Eligibility
To be entitled to file an international application, an applicant must satisfy at least one of the following conditions (entitlements):
  • Be a national of a Contracting Party (country a member of the treaty).
  • Be a national of a Member State of an intergovernmental organization which is a Contracting Party (such as the European Union or the African Intellectual Property Organization).
  • Have a domicile in the territory of a Contracting Party.
  • Have a real and effective industrial or commercial establishment in the territory of a Contracting Party, or only under the Geneva (1999) Act.
  • Have a habitual residence in a Contracting Party.
  • Country list – See www.FortressPATENTS.Com.
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Highlights
Key International Design Registration elements:
  • Not a patent, but a registration or association of a design to the designer.
  • Similar but more informal protections of ownership as with a patent.
  • Covers industrial designs of two or three dimension.
  • Administered by the World Intellectual Property Organization (WIPO).
  • The U.S. does not ascribe to these agreements so International Design Registration would be accessible to those with a designer with national connections to a signing country or organizational operations in a signing country.
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Fees
Determined at the time of filing.
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Governing Treaties and Agreements
Hague Agreement – Concerns the registration of industrial designs (provisions for design database and search capability and a single application used for filing in separate participating countries).
Locarno Agreement – Authorizes an international classification for industrial designs (classes and subclasses, explanation notes, etc.)
Paris Convention – Protection ascribed for industrial designs (domain names, designs, indicators, trade secrets, etc.)
WIPO Convention – World Intellectual Property Organization update (copyright and related rights, domain names, enforcement provisions, etc.).
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Protection Varies By Country
Depending on the particular national law and the kind of design, an industrial design may also be protected as an unregistered design or as a work of art under copyright law. In some countries, industrial design and copyright protection can exist concurrently. In other countries, they are mutually exclusive: meaning that once the owner chooses one kind of protection, he can no longer invoke the other. Under certain circumstances an industrial design may also be eligible for protection under unfair competition law, although the conditions of protection and the rights and remedies ensured can be significantly different.
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Information on this page includes excerpts from the World Intellectual Property Organization (WIPO) Industrial Design web pages. Further information can be reviewed at the World Intellectual Property Organization (WIPO) Industrial Design section at http://www.wipo.int/designs/en/.
Fortress PATENTS / IP is available to provide consultation or facilitate design protection on the international stage. Contact us by any means to initiate a discussion and application.
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