A design registration helps protect the appearance of a product, such as its shape or pattern.
Registering your design makes it easier to prove:
- that the design is legally yours
- when you created it
This will help if anyone tries to copy or use your design without your permission.
Before registering a design, check it is the right protection for your intellectual property.
A design registration lasts 5 years. You must renew your design registration every 5 years to keep it protected - up to a maximum of 25 years.
What you can register
Your design must be new.
The design of something can include one or more of the following:
- physical shape
- configuration (or how different parts of a design are arranged together)
- decoration or colour
What you cannot register
You cannot register:
- offensive material, for example swear words or pornographic images
- designs making use of national flags you do not have permission to use
- designs making use of official emblems or hallmarks, for example the Olympic rings or coats of arms
- the functionality of a design, for example a chair that folds down more quickly than others of the same kind
What it costs
Registering a design costs from £50 for one design to £150 for up to 50.
The application process
You can apply online or by post.
You must send the Intellectual Property Office (IPO) detailed illustrations of your designs, including any notes to describe exactly what you are registering.
You’ll get a decision on your application within 3 weeks.