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Registered designs

Registered designs are entered in the design register for products, so-called designs or models, designed with a view to aesthetic aspects. The design or model must have been unusual for an average designer. Unusual means any non-commonplace creative act. Whether a design has the requisite peculiarity will not be tested by the German Patent and Trademark Office at registration.

A design or a model must not yet have been publicly known before the date of application. For assessment of this prerequisite, publications which were made by the applicant no more than six months before the application date are disregarded.

The term of a registered design may be extended by 5 years at a time, to a maximum of 20 years. During its term, a registered design - assuming its legal validity - entitles its owner to prohibit use of the protected product by other persons.