How to protect product parts with design patents

Is patenting replacement parts a smart IP strategy? If there is a market for secondary product parts, it may make sense to file design patent applications to protect the ornamental appearance of each visually unique component. It is not uncommon for an overall product to be protected by multiple design patents covering individual parts. This […]

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Can fashion and clothing be protected with design patents?

Protecting fashion with design patents In the fashion world, looks matter. Design patents are all about protecting unique ornamental appearances, so it makes sense for the fashion industry to consider this type of IP before launching new lines. Keep in mind that US design patents have specific requirements that may differ from design laws of […]

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GUI Design Patents: What to know

Is US design patent protection available for a graphical user interface (GUI)? Yes, it is possible to obtain a US design patent on a graphical user interface. The patent examining rules refer to GUIs as two-dimensional Computer-Generated Icons which may be statutory subject matter (read protectable) if they comply with certain guidelines [see MPEP 1504.01(a)]. […]

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What is the design patent application process and cost?

What is the design patent application process? The examination process (aka “prosecution”) for a US design patent application comprises three main stages: initial filing; Office Actions (if any); and allowance. How to file a US design patent application The initial filing a design patent application with the USPTO is fairly straightforward. The two primary components […]

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Can a single design patent application include multiple designs?

Can a single design patent application include multiple designs? The short answer is yes, but you may want to think twice before including multiple designs (aka embodiments) in a single design patent application. However, the risk is that a multi-design applicant may incur greater costs in the long term by attempting to cover multiple designs […]

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What Should Chinese Applicants Know About US Design Patents?

Reasons for Procuring US Design Patents Chinese design patent owners will already know the benefits of design patent protection in the US. Unlike US utility patents, a typical US design patent may be obtained more quickly and for less money. The allowance rate of US design applications, particularly upon a first review by the patent examiner […]

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How much does a US design patent application cost in 2019?

Design Patents are Easier, Faster & Cheaper Design patents are generally faster and cheaper to procure than utility patents. Design patents also have a significantly higher allowance rate than utility patents, with most US design applications allowed without any substantive prior art rejections. The USPTO reported an allowance rate of 90% for design patent applications […]

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Can a design patent application claim priority to a utility patent application?

Can a design patent application claim priority to a utility non-provisional application? A design patent application may claim priority to a pending utility non-provisional patent application, but not to a provisional patent application under 35 USC § 172. The drawings in the earlier filed non-provisional application must adequately support the drawings to be filed in the […]

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