Essential requirements for the registration of ‘design’ under the Designs Act, 2000
- The design should be new or original, not previously published or used in any country before the date of application for registration. The novelty may reside in the application of a known shape or pattern to new subject matter. However, if the design for which application is made does not involve any real mental activity for conception, then registration may not be considered.
- The design should relate to features of shape, configuration, pattern or ornamentation applied to an article. Thus, designs of industrial plans, layouts and installations are not registrable under the Act.
- The design should be applied to any article by any industrial process. Normally, designs of artistic nature like painting, sculptures and the like which are not produced in bulk by any industrial process are excluded from registration under the Act. Paintings and sculptures are subject matter of copyright.
- The features of the designs in the finished article should appeal to and are judged solely by the eye. This implies that the design must appear and should be visible on the finished article, for which it is meant. Thus, any design in the inside arrangement of a box, money purse or almirah may not be considered for registration, as these are generally put in the market in the closed state.
- Any mode or principle of construction or operation or any thing, which, in substance is a mere mechanical device, would not qualify for registrable design. For instance, a key having its novelty only in the shape of its corrugation or bend at the portion intended to engage with levers inside the lock associated with, cannot be registered as a design under the Act. However, when any design suggests any mode or principle of construction or mechanical or other action of a mechanism, a suitable disclaimer in respect thereof is required to be inserted on its representation, provided there are other registrable features in the design.
- The design should not include any trade mark or property mark or artistic work.