Product Designers – Listen Up!
The way designers can register and protect their products is changing from 1 October 2017.
What happens now?
Owners mark their product with the registered design number and the word “registered” (or an abbreviation). If someone creates a product with the same or a similar design but is able to prove that at the time they did not know the design was registered, they may avoid paying damages for making an infringing product (although the owner may still be able to obtain an injunction to stop the infringer and claim an account of profits from them). By applying a the registered design number and “registered” wording on the product, owners can prevent infringers from arguing they weren’t aware of registration, and so open up the possibility of claiming damages.
From 1 October 2017
Owners will be able to mark their product with an internet link which the public can access (free of charge) which links directly with a list of clear and current information about which registered designs and associated registered numbers apply to the product. Note that the owner’s website home page will not be sufficient unless the product information happens to be on the home page.
What are the benefits?
For the owners – potentially reduced burden/costs associated with marking products and increased chance of successfully claiming damages in infringement proceedings.
For the public – easier access to current information in respect of each design and reduced risk of inadvertently copying a registered design.
For more information on registered designs, please contact Harry Partridge at firstname.lastname@example.org or on +44 (0)1732 224 092
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