Patent Office asks designers about registration improvements

The Patent Office is calling on designers to assist with the modernisation of the UK design registration process, as part of a consultation exercise taking place before changes are implemented in October.


A series of changes have been proposed by the Patent Office across both the application process and design rules. One key alteration that has been suggested is allowing multiple applications on each registration. At present only one per registration is permitted – a change that should lead to cost and time savings for design professionals.


A provision to delay the publication and subsequent registration of a design application for up to 12 months has also been mooted.


According to Patent Office business development manager Miles Rees, the office is seeking consultation with the industry to ‘understand how the UK designer service will look in the future’.


‘Awareness of intellectual property [and design registration] is very low in the UK. We’re very interested in hearing from designers and are keen to get people involved in making the process [more effective],’ says Rees.


The project comes in part as response to increasing competition from the European Design Office in Alicante, adds Rees. At present, designers can register UK-only designs for £60 each or EU-wide, through Alicante, for £250 – both for a period of five years.


Designers who are interested in being involved should contact Janet Folwell at janet.folwell@patent.gov.uk before Friday 7 October.

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