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International Design Registration

International Design Registration


The EC deposited its instrument of accession to the Geneva Act of the Hague Agreement on September 24, 2007. It will have effect as from January 1, 2008.


The Geneva Act enables designers to obtain protection for a design in a variety of countries by way of a single international application filed with the World Intellectual Property Office (WIPO) in Geneva. This system has similarities to the Madrid trade mark system, and can replace the need for separate applications at the national offices of each EU country of interest. However, unlike the Madrid trade mark system, an earlier "home" registration is not required as the basis for an International design registration.


A successful request for protection produces the same effect in each of the designated countries/territories as if the design had been registered there directly unless protection is refused by the national/regional office of that country/territory. An International application can cover up to 100 designs and deferred publication is available.


The list of member countries does not currently include the UK. However, UK residents, and legal entities having a commercial base in the UK, (or indeed any other EU country) can now benefit from the International design system in securing design protection abroad.


The list of member countries/territories can be found at http://www.wipo.int/treaties/en/documents/pdf/hague.pdf