Design Registration Process.
1. Searching before you apply
We feel it is important to have a thorough search conducted prior to filing an official application with the government office. This is to ensure that you are not infringing an existing registered design, and that your design is, in fact, new.
If your design is NOT new and distinct, then any registration you are granted may be invalid, and subsequently hold no value. In addition, if you are infringing an existing registration, the owner of that registration would be within their rights to bring legal action against you.
We make a note for your consideration that the following products, or products featuring the following are not registrable:
Information or graphics regarded as scandalous in material
Anything that includes the word ANZAC
The Olympic rings and the Olympic Motto (in any language)
Representations of Queen Elizabeth II or any members of the Royal Family
Certain coats of Arms, flags and emblems
2. Filing the Official Application
Once a search is complete, or if you elect not to have a design search conducted, we can file an application with the government office requesting your design be registered.
At this step, we will need to advise the government office of a title for your design. This title is to be a generic term, rather than your unique brand. It is to be the common word or words used to describe the product. We can also file a statement of newness and distinctiveness to outline what is new about your design.
When it comes time to file the official application we must provide drawings or photographs of your design. At that time, we will advise you more specifically as to what types of angles and pictures are required.Our office will be listed as your postal address for the application so that any government correspondence is sent to us so that you are not bothered unnecessarily.
3. Government Examination
Under the current Designs Act, examination is no longer automatic. Which means you will be granted registration but, for this registration to be enforceable you must request examination.
Without examination, your registration will deter people from copying your design. However, if an infringer fails to cease using your design once made aware that it belongs to you and legal action is then required, registration without examination will not enforce protection.
If you choose to request examination, it must be done within six months of filing the application, and once complete we will receive either a Notice advising that your design is certified, or a report if there are any problems found.
Should the latter occur, we can of course assist in responding and gaining a legally enforceable registration of your design.
Your initial registration period will last for five years from the date the application was first filed. You may then renew your design registration for a further five years only, if you wish.
You will receive a reminder approximately six weeks before the initial period expires to allow time to renew your registration.
If you do not renew before the final date, there will be a small window of time to file a late renewal. However, if it is not done with in this time, your registration will lapse and protection will no longer be valid.