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Is registration the only option to protect the design of my product ?

The design of your product can also be protected as an unregistered Community design. This applies within the whole of the EU for a period of three years, starting from the date when you first made your design available to the public in the EU. And the good news is no registration is needed. Protection applies automatically when you make your design available to the public.

An unregistered Community design gives you the right to prohibit others from using your design. However, this applies only if that design is an intentional copy of your design, in other words, the copy is made even though the existence of your earlier design is known by the copier. Unregistered Community designs are often used in the fashion industry.

In some cases, the appearance of a product can also be protected by copyright if the product is original and features the personal mark of its creator. Find out more about copyright protection by clicking here.