Your business might need to register industrial design if you’ve created an object with unique features, patterns, configurations, shapes, or ornaments. Registering your industrial design protects it from being copied for up to 15 years.
What is industrial design registration?
Industrial design covers articles usually made by tools, machines, or hand. Some examples of unique industrial design include the shape of a Coca-Cola bottle, a snowboard shape, or the Eames Lounge Chair. Basically, industrial design registration (also known as a “design patent” in other countries) covers the way a product looks. It can cover the shape of an object, as well as 2D features like its colour or its patterns.
Registering your unique industrial design can prevent competitors from copying it, and give your business a competitive advantage.
How to register an industrial design patent
You must register your industrial design within 12 months of publication, so it’s protected against imitation. To register an industrial design patent, you need to submit an application form with a photo or drawing of your property, followed by an assessment. This process can take up to a year, due to the amendments and additional information that might be needed, and usually costs around $400. The maintenance of the registration fee, however, can cost around $350.
To show you’ve got an industrial design patent, you can use a capital “D” inside a circle on the object in question, followed by your name.
You can read more about industrial designs at the Canadian Intellectual Property Office’s website.