A registered design gives protection to the shape of the product e.g. lines, colours or any three-dimensional form. The idea is to prevent others from reproducing the external design of the product for industrial use. The owner of a registered design can prevent others from reproducing, importing, illicitly profiting, selling or utilising for commercial purposes by reproducing the design.
Industrial design focuses on aesthetic value and do not protect the technical or functional features of the product, it only applies to the aesthetic nature of a finished product, and it is distinct from any technical or functional aspects. Industrial design protects the aesthetic value and relevant to the fashion, textile design, jewellery industry etc. A registered design is protected for a period of 5 years from the date of the application for registration. Protection may be renewed for two further consecutive periods of 5 years. The Trademarks, Patents and Designs Registry domiciled in the Commercial Law Department of the Federal Ministry of Industry, Trade and Investment is saddled with the responsibility for registration of industrial design.
REQUIREMENTS FOR PROTECTION OF INDUSTRIAL DESIGN
The right to the registration of a design is vested in the person who is the first to file an application for the registration of the design.
REGISTERING INDUSTRIAL DESIGN
In order to register a design in Nigeria, there are a number of steps an applicant must first take:
Once the design application has been accepted, the design is the registered and a registration certificate will be issued and a duplicate of the design certificate will be included in the Register of Industrial Designs.
There is an urgent need to amend the Patent and Designs Act to be more relevant with modern trend. The current framework is not clear on how reverse engineering could affect the enjoyment of the intellectual property rights. Owners of rights are encouraged to commercialise their innovation by utilising available intellectual property management mechanism.
Woye Famojuro – email@example.com