Protecting designs and models

Designs and models

Protection for designs and models applies to the appearance of a product or part of a product, characterised in particular by its lines, contours, colour, shape, texture or materials.

In order to benefit from protection, the design or model must be new, i.e. it must not be identical or quasi-identical to a previously divulged design or model, and it must present a character of its own. It must evoke an overall visual impression that is different to the visual impression evoked by any other previously divulged creation in people skilled in the art.

Protection lasts for 5 years and is renewable in 5 year periods up to a maximum of 25 years.  The shape of industrial products is also protected by copyright, without any formalities. However, filing a design or model confers a set creation date, and the holder will benefit from a presumption of ownership.

Given that everyone is subjective to a certain extent, we will help you set out your objectives.  It is necessary to know, for example, that “if the shape is inseparable from the function of the object,” patent law applies.

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