Your design must be new

Your design is considered new if no identical design has been made public before the filing date of your registration application.

You must not sell or market your product before registration

Due to the requirement of novelty, you must not sell or market the product you intend to protect by design right before you apply for registration at the PRH.

You are not allowed to exhibit the product, either, nor to make it public in any other way before filing your application.

Exception: Grace period

With some risks, you are nevertheless allowed to test your product on the market before registration. The so-called grace period provision makes it possible, for instance, for the creator of a design to test their product on the market for up to 12 months before deciding whether to apply to register the design.

Once you apply for registration, the design in your application has to be the same as the design you published earlier.

The grace period involves many risks. Therefore, we recommend that you do not make your design public in any way before you submit your registration application to our office.

What are the risks of the grace period?

A similar grace period provision does not apply in every country. Making the design public before filing a registration application may therefore be an obstacle to registration abroad.

If made public before applying for registration, the design also risks being copied, in which case it cannot be registered.

In addition, difficult questions of interpretation and proof may be involved in publishing the design and applying the grace period provision.

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Latest update 24.07.2019