Design Patent Application

What is a Design Patent?

A design patent protects the unique visual ornamental characteristics embodied or applied on a manufactured item. It is a good option if your product has distinct surface ornamentation or a distinct configuration. A product that has a similar appearance to an item or object protected from a design patent may not be made, copied, manufactured or imported to the country.

Who can obtain a Design Patent?

A design patent is granted by the patent law to any person who has invented an original or any new ornamental design for an item or article of manufacture. Note that a design patent only protects the appearance of an article and not the structural or the way of its operation.

How to obtain this patent?

If you wish to have patent protection for your product, you need to file an application with the United States Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO).

How long does a Design Patent last?

A design patent may last up to 14 to 15 years. No maintenance fee or renewals are required for this patent. It is easier to obtain and can be awarded in a shorter period as compared to other patents.

When do you qualify for a Design Patent?

An item qualifies for a design patent when its design is entirely new. This means that no single, identical design or a previous art must exist. It should be at par with the ornamental standards and it must be original to the inventor or inventors who are seeking protection. It needs to be unapparent with any priorly existing design or combination of ornamental characteristics when viewed by someone skilled in similar art. Design patents cannot be obtained for designs that are not visible when the item or product is in use. Usually, a design patent is obtained by someone who has aesthetic or artistic skill for a product that has artistically appealing features.