What are designs?
As explained in the Designs Act, 2000 design means:
• Features of shape, configuration, pattern, ornament
• composition of lines or colors applied to any article whether in two dimensional or three dimensional or in both forms
• applied by any industrial process or means, whether manual, mechanical or chemical, separate or combined.
What is the necessity of design registration?
The main purpose of design registration is to ensure that artisans, creator and originator of the design is not deprived of his bonafide reward and to refrain others from applying the similar designs to their goods.
Also, registration of a design confers legal rights to bring an action for infringement under the provisions of Design Act, 2000.
Which act governs the design system in India?
The design system in India is governed by The Designs Act, 2000 and The Designs Rule, 2001.
Which designs are not registrable?
• A design which is not new or original
• A design which is already in public domain
• A design which cannot be distinguished from known designs or combination of known designs
• A design which contains scandalous or obscene matter
Who can apply for design registration in India?
An application for registration of a design can be filed by any person claiming to be a proprietor of a new or original design applied on an article.
When is it the ideal time to file for a design registration?
The ideal time to file for a design registration is as soon as the plan is made so that it stays new when applied for registration.
Is it possible to get design registered in more than one class?
No, registration of design cam be only done in single class only.
Where does the application for registration of design is to be filed?
As there are no designated offices for design registration, an application for design registration is to be filed in any branch of the Indian Patent Office (IPO).
The further proceedings relating to the design application takes place at the Kolkata branch of Indian Patent Office.
What is an abandoned design?
An application which owing to any default or neglect on the part of the applicant has not been completed so as to proceed for registration, within the prescribed time period is termed as an abandoned design.
Is it possible to obtain registration on an already registered design belonging to the same class but for a different article?
Yes, if the articles are different, it is possible to obtain registration even if both the articles belong to the same class.
Is it possible for a design to be restored?
Yes, the proprietor may within 1 year from the date on which the design ceased to have effect, submit an application for restoration of the design by paying the endorsed fees for a design to be restored.
What is the duration for design protection?
Designs are protected for a time period of 10 years from the date of registration.
The designs can be re-established for an additional period of 5 years on payment of endorsed expenses before the expiry of the initial duration of 10 years.
Are the registered designs open for public examination?
Yes, the registered designs are open for public examination, after publication in the official journal at a cost of Rs 500/-
What is piracy of design?
When the application of a design or its imitation to any article in which the design has been registered for the purpose of sale or importation is used/published by any unauthorized person without the written consent of the registered proprietor it is termed as piracy of design.
What are the remedies available for design piracy?
In case of design piracy, the person will be liable to pay a sum of Rs 25,000/- which can be extend to a sum of Rs 50,000/- per design to the registered proprietor.
The registered proprietor can also bring an infringement suit in any court not below the court of District Judge.
Can ownership be transferred in case of designs?
Yes, ownership of designs can be transferred by way of licensing, assignment, transmission, agreement.
Is it possible for a licensed owner to change the name and address in the design application?
No, it is only possible for the actual owner to change the name, address and other such details specified during the registration of design.
Are abandoned and lapsed designs like the registered designs open for public inspection?
Abandoned designs are not open for public inspection. However, lapsed designs are available in public domain.
What does priority claim mean?
As India is a member of the Paris Convention, so right to priority is pertinent.
The first application will be documented in one of the contracting states, and the Applicant may in a period of half year apply for assurance in other contracting states.
The last application will be viewed as if it has been recorded at the same time as the principal application.
What are the remedies available for design infringement?
There are no criminal remedies available for design infringement.
However, the registered proprietor has the right to file against the infringer for:
• Recovery of damages.
• Seizure of infringing goods.
• Temporary/permanent injunction.