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An industrial design right is an intellectual property right that protects the visual design of objects that are not purely utilitarian. An industrial design consists of the creation of a shape, configuration or composition of pattern or color, or combination of pattern and color in three-dimensional form containing aesthetic value. An industrial design can be a two- or three-dimensional pattern used to produce a product, industrial commodity or handicraft.
Under the Hague Agreement Concerning the International Deposit of Industrial Designs, a WIPO-administered treaty, a procedure for an international registration exists. To qualify for registration, the national laws of most member states of WIPO require the design to be novel. An applicant can file for a single international deposit with WIPO or with the national office in a country party to the treaty. The design will then be protected in as many member countries of the treaty as desired. Design rights started in the United Kingdom in 1787 with the Designing and Printing of Linen Act and have expanded from there.
India's Design Act, 2000 was enacted to consolidate and amend the law relating to protection of design and to comply with the articles 25 and 26 of TRIPS agreement. The new act, (earlier Patent and Design Act, 1911 was repealed by this act) now defines "design" to mean only the features of shape, configuration, pattern, ornament, or composition of lines or colours applied to any article, whether in two- or three-dimensional, or in both forms, by any industrial process or means, whether manual or mechanical or chemical, separate or combined, which in the finished article appeal to and are judged solely by the eye; but does not include any mode or principle of construction.
A design registration is used to obtain protection for the features of shape, configuration, pattern or ornaments.
The design may consist of three-dimensional features, such as the shape or configuration of an article, or of two-dimensional features, such as patterns or ornaments.
The words "pattern" and "ornament" refer to something that is embossed, engraved or placed upon an article for the purpose of decoration.
Note: Design registration does not protect any technical features of the article to which it is applied. (See Patent)
TERM OF DESIGN REGISTRATION
Upon grant, design registration confers rights for a period of 15 years from the date of application. The registration is valid for an initial term of 10 years and can be renewed for another 5 years.
An industrial Design registration
The design may consist of three-dimensional features, such as the shape or surface of an article, or of two-dimensional features, such as patterns, lines or color. made by any industrial process or means, whether manual, mechanical or chemical, separate or combined, which in the finished article appeal to and are judged solely by the eye, but does not include any mode or principle or construction or any thing which is in substance a mere mechanical device, and does not include any trade mark, as define in clause (v) of sub-section of Section 2 of the Trade and Merchandise Marks Act, 1958,
The date of registration except in case of priority is the actual date of filing of the application. In case of registration of design with priority, the date of registration is the date of making an application in the reciprocal country.
Piracy of a design means the application of a design or its imitation to any article belonging to class of articles in which the design has been registered for the purpose of sale or importation of such articles without the written consent of the registered proprietor. Publishing such articles or exposing terms for sale with knowledge of the unauthorized application of the design to them also involves piracy of the design.
If anyone contravenes the copyright in a design he is liable for every offence to pay a sum not exceeding Rs. 25,000/- to the registered proprietor subject to a maximum of Rs. 50,000/- recoverable as contract debt in respect of any one design. The registered proprietor may bring a suit for the recovery of the damages for any such contravention and for injunction against repetition of the same. Total sum recoverable shall not exceed Rs. 50,000/-as contract debt as stated in Section 22(2)(a). The suit for infringement, recovery of damage etc should not be filed in any court below the court of District Judge.
India is one of the countries party to the Paris Convention so the provisions for the right of priority are applicable. On the basis of a regular first application filed in one of the contracting states, the applicant may within six months apply for protection in other contracting states, latter application will be regarded as if it had been filed on the same day as the first application.