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For protecting the design features of a product

Wat is a design?

The appearance of a product can be protected under the design law. Two dimensional creations, such as patterns and designs for wallpaper, fabric, etc. and for example three dimensional creations, such as domestic appliances, toys, packaging, furniture, etc. are eligable for design protection. The design needs to be novel and authentic.

That what is necessary for obtaining a technical effect is excluded from design protection.

How do I obtain design protection?

A design can be registered by filing it at the dedicated official governmental bodies. In the Benelux, a design can be filed at the Benelux Office for Intellectual Property (BOIP). It is also possible to file a trademark in Europe or internationally. There are various possibilities when registering designs abroad. One may choose for national design registrations. Alternatively, there are several international agreements, on the basis of which with one application, design protection can be obtained in multiple countries. Examples thereof are international registrations and European design registrations (Community Design). A registration via one of these systems is usually more economical than individual national registrations.

Vriesendorp & Gaade has very experienced trademark and design attorneys. Please visit the page 'Our people' and select 'Trademark and design attorneys' to get an overview. Our trademark and design attorneys have extensive experience in advising clients with respect to the protection of designs in the Benelux and abroad, and portfolio management. They handle the entire registration process, from the first consultation up to the registration of the design in the Benelux and Europa, and internationally via our excellent network of agents.

Which information is required?

During a first consultation, we would like to receive the following information:

  • What kind of product is it?
  • Drawings and/or photographs of the design
  • What do you intend to accomplish with the design registration?
  • Does the design have several embodiments?
  • Coverage: Where would you like to register your trademark? Where are your most important competitors located and/or where are your most important markets?

The drawings and/or photographs preferably present an impression of the design that is as complete as possible. As far as the nature and the dimensions of the design allow for it, we would like to have the following views (front, back, top, bottom, left, right, perspective/isometric):

A first consultation?

The trademark attorneys of Vriesendorp & Gaade are gladly of service to you to register your designs in the Benelux, Europe and abroad. We will provide you with a clear and practical advise. We invite you to contact us for a free consultation at your location or at one of our offices.

The information above forms the basis for the first consultation. Preferably, the information is as complete as possible. During the first consultation, we will normally be able to make a good assessment of the strategy to obtain the trademark rights in the jurisidctions that are relevant to you.


In the Benelux, a design may be registered within one year from the publication thereof. However, to prevent discussions about the ownership of the design, it is recommended to register the design as soon as possible; preferably prior to publication. After all, if the design is published, you already run the risk of copying.

More information?

Do you still have questions? Please do not hesitate to contact us.

You can also download our design brochure for additional information.

pdf icon download our brochure