Design protection is directed to the distinctive visual appearance of articles. In the United States, this form of protection is termed a “design patent”.
A registered design application may be directed to the three-dimensional shape of a product, or a two-dimensional pattern applied to the surface of a product. Design law may be used to protect a broad range of articles including goods as diverse as clothing, electricals, furniture, toys, and automotive spare parts.
Design protection is generally easier to obtain than a patent; however the term of protection is relatively short at 10 years. It is also important to remember that design protection does not cover how a product actually works, but just its appearance.
A Design is a legal right giving the owner the right to a monopoly in the shape, configuration, pattern or ornamentation of a product, typically for a term of 10 years. The owner of a registered design can prevent other businesses from copying their design.