The international equivalent to design patents are “industrial designs.” Industrial designs are used in the rest of the world to protect a variety of products of industry and handicraft items: from packages and containers to furnishing and household goods, from lighting equipment to jewelry, and from electronic devices to textiles. Industrial designs may also be relevant to graphic symbols, graphical user interfaces (GUI), and logos.
In most countries, an industrial design needs to be registered in order to be protected under industrial design law as a “registered design”. Industrial design laws in some countries grant – without registration – time- and scope limited protection to so-called “unregistered industrial designs”. Depending on the particular national law and the kind of design, industrial designs may also be protected as works of art under copyright law or trademark laws.
Not only do we obtain design patents for our clients (and often trademark, tradedress, and copyright protection), we also work with foreign attorneys to ensure that our clients designs are fully protected in other countries and regions.