Protection and management of designs—a practical guide
Produced in partnership with RPC
Protection and management of designs—a practical guide

The following IP guidance note Produced in partnership with RPC provides comprehensive and up to date legal information covering:

  • Protection and management of designs—a practical guide
  • Registered designs
  • Unregistered designs
  • Other considerations
  • Conclusion—top tips for effective protection of design rights

As of exit day (31 January 2020) the UK is no longer an EU Member State. However, in accordance with the Withdrawal Agreement, the UK has entered an implementation period, during which it continues to be subject to EU law. This has an impact on this Practice Note. For further guidance, see Practice Note: Brexit—IP rights.

Designs are protected by law both at UK and EU levels. Designs can be protected by registered design rights and/or unregistered design rights. For an overview of the protection available for designs, see Practice Note: Applying for UK and EU registered designs and Q&A: How do I protect my design?

This note provides practical guidance to enable proprietors of designs to ensure that their designs benefit from the protection available. The note deals with considerations relating to registered designs and unregistered designs separately. Issues relevant to both registered and unregistered designs are discussed in the sections entitled: Other considerations and Conclusion—top tips for effective protection of design rights below.

Registered designs

Registered designs give designers a monopoly right over the appearance of their design. Such protection is valuable to a designer, but there are a number of potential pitfalls to be aware of, both before and during the registration period, which could limit the benefit of a registration.

How best to represent your design

Guidance from the