How to file a U.S. design patent application?
Protecting ornamental designs is one of the crucial aspects of manufacturing companies at a global level today. Since the products consistently are driven through customers’ changing requirements, their respective designs improved.
It is understood that design patents provide protection of the ornamental design or shape of the product for some years in a given jurisdiction. However, it Is equally crucial to understand what portion of the design needs to be protected.
Quality design patent applications require less time to get approved from the patent office as compared to a utility patent. However, components within the product to be protected have to be clearly laid out in terms of views to be compliant with USPTO requirements.
Some key points to be taken care of while filing a design patent include:
- Understanding the product based on its uniqueness ornamentally.
- Taking care of internal components within the product to be claimed or not
- Defining all claimable parts of the product and discriminating with the non-claimable part
- Providing USPTO compliant shading, lines, color distinctions of claimable part from non-claim part
- Including necessary ornamental representation of parts of the product
- Complying to 37 CFR requirements laid out by USPTO
Like in utility patent applications, the design patent applications are subject to the examiner’s review of prior patents and literature available in the market. Hence, it is recommended to conduct a thorough design patent search based on keywords, classes (Locarno, Domestic design classes), and their combination to ensure the patent application is not susceptible to easy rejection from USPTO.
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