Design in the USA

The external appearance of a product, its shape and colour, are often decisive for the success in the market. Thus, design is a tool for business competitiveness and an investment that represents an added value, especially in one of the largest markets in the world, such as the United States.

It makes a difference

Therefore, in order for a company to differentiate its products and make a difference with respect to the competition, it is essential to ensure adequate protection of this external aspect through a  strategic action of design registration in the United States.

The protection of a product’s design, a particularly important and precious aspect for any country, is based on the rules that protect its functions.

To ensure a high level of competitiveness and to protect the original creation of a product design from copying by third parties, the most appropriate and secure modality is a design registration in the United States.

Why choose Protectia Patentes y Marcas for design registration in the United States?

Having a specialized attorney or an Official Industrial Property Agent is the key to ensure the best protection.

You will be able to file your design application in the United States with confidence, trusting that:

  • We have extensive experience in the sector and a team of highly qualified professionals to advise, prepare and manage the protection of all types of industrial designs in the United States.
  • We offer you advice during all the phases of design registration in the United States: before the application, during the processing and up to the grant.
  • We have our own legal representative in the United States, so all you need to do is sign a simple power of attorney to carry out any procedure.

Design registration in the United States: processing

The United States Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO) is the administrative authority that has the power, among others, to process and grant the registration of industrial designs in the United States.

Under US law, and in general terms, design registration in the US protects:

  • the shape of a product,
  • the surface ornamentation applied to an article,
  • the combination of configuration and surface ornamentation.

Unlike in Europe, designs in the US are registered as design patents.

It is very important to know that for non-residents of the United States it is essential to have a legal representative.

The procedure for registering a design in the United States is as follows:

If there are objections to the application
Between 18 and 22 months
Between 18 and 22 months

Design registration in the United States: processing

  • Filing of the application.
  • Formal examination: where compliance with the formalities of the application, completeness of the drawings and compliance of the design with the patentability requirements are checked.
  • Substantive examination: a search of the state of the art is carried out in order to ensure that it meets all the patentability requirements. If there are no objections, a design patent is granted for 14 years and no maintenance payment is required.
  • Issuance of an “Official Action” (or Office Action) by the patent examiner of the Patent and Trademark Office assigned to the application, in case he discovers objections to the application. The notice may allow certain conditions or reject and raise objections due to the process or the design itself and contain suggestions for remedying defects. If, after receiving the notice, applicant chooses to proceed with the application, a timely written response to the notice must be filed.
  • After submission of the response to the notice, the application will be re-examined and re-searched in the light of the amendments made.
  • Final decision: the examiner can either grant the application or reject it. The applicant may file an appeal after the final decision in case the application is refused. The applicant can also apply for a new industrial design claiming priority of the previous one, before it is abandoned.

Do you want to register an Industrial Design in the USA?