Design Search

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Why PatentsKart ?

A design patent application undergoes a rigorous review and examination by The United States Patent and Trademarks Office (USPTO). For your designs to issue as Registered Design patents, they must be novel (new) or non-obvious compared with similar prior existing product designs (by doing design search)- this means you'll have some severe making magic up ahead.

It's essential to plan when it comes to obtaining design patent protection. Modifying the patent drawings to include different embodiments or variations of the claimed design is one example of this. This could also involve portraying variations in the design's size, shape, or proportions. Additionally, it may widen the extent of the protection sought by the design filing by placing certain minor features in dashed or buried lines in the drawings.

Designers should consider getting a design patent to protect their designs from being copied by other companies that produce similar items or competing brands since it will ensure no one can steal the idea behind your invention.

Design Search J-PlatPat (Japan Platform for Patent Information) is an official digital library for all the data: utility models, trademarks, designs, and patents.

Before applying, you can conduct a free search for identical or similar designs(published data) in the DPMA register Internet service and the databases of other patent offices. These are some of the services offered by the DPMA.

We work with you to understand and analyze the key features of your product and accordingly design strategies to search and identify claims elements (of relevant references) that read onto the product features. Limit search scope can lead to jurisdictions of interest. May include expired patents existing in the public domain upon request. The legal status is provided for tracking patent expirations, which can use to design the timeline for market entry, thus, mitigating the risk of infringements.

"Are you selling/producing your product/invention without infringing on other people's patents?" This is what freedom to operate search helps get the answer to.

The legal status of each relevant reference | Product to patent claim maps | 5-7 business days turnaround time | Customized and free of cost quotes

  • Industrial designs are some of the most valuable properties in a country, and they’re found all over Europe. In contrast to America’s examination system where you have to register your design with local authorities (patent office) once it meets certain requirements – for instance, being approved for protection by that particular jurisdiction- foreigners must follow suit if they want their work protected under community or industrial design law.
  • Substantive examination, or the comparison of a design application for which registration is being looked for with prior existing designs, typically only occurs if or when an infringing party has been identified.
  • Foreign design filing can either be done on a country-by-country basis or by filing an international design application.
  • The International Design System – for the Registration of Industrial Designs is a revolutionary way to register your industrial design. Utilizing this system, you can file in over fifty countries with just one application and get instant worldwide protection.
  • If you want to take advantage of U.S.-based design patents, remember to make any foreign filings within six months of a prior U.S. filing date to prioritize benefit over their own country’s system and avoid being statutorily barred from seeking protection under this type of law.

The Ultimate Guide to Getting a Design Patent Overseas

Why do we need to conduct a Design Search?

From a practical point of view, design patents can be a much faster way to obtain patent protection. Examination in the USPTO usually takes place within 12 months, indifference to the two to three years (or more) of waiting for the first action in a utility patent application. And the expedited examination of a U.S. design application is also available. For expedited examination, in addition to filing a design application, the application should include:

1) a petition seeking for expedited examination, 2) the government fee of $900 ($450 for small businesses and individuals) 3) the prior art search results. Suppose an expedited design patent application is properly filed. In that case, an examination will take place within a few months, and issuance of a design patent occurs within six months.

Design patents provide no. of advantages as compared to utility patents. For example, design patents are generally less expensive and have no maintenance fees if the design issues a patent. In addition, the allowance rate is significantly higher for design applications and can generally obtain design patents much faster as compared to utility patents.

Design patents provide the same advantages as utility patents. Once a design patent application is on file, the product can be labeled as "patent pending'' once a design patent has been issued, it can change the marking to patented.

Contact a patent attorney because, from a legal standpoint, design patents can be a perfect tool for preventing or stopping knockoffs and showing the status of your design patent to the world. You can also use them to prevent the importation of infringing products.

Further, design patents provide limited protection compared to utility patents since design patents cannot protect against third-party copying of a functional or structural innovation unless the innovation includes a configuration or shape that was also copied

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Filing Prerequisites for Design Patents

Patent law is federal regulation. To guarantee patent rights, an inventor must apply with USPTO. Below are the widespread steps you should follow when applying for a design patent.

Eligibility - The design must be qualified for patent protection. The design patent must indicate that the creation of an object is remarkable, it does not affect the operation of the thing, and it cannot be removed from the object.

Patent Search - The creator should accomplish a thorough patent search on the USPTO website to determine whether the design is already in existence or not. Patent Application - The patent application typically contains the following-

--- Abstract- This is a basic introduction to the design that is being patented.

--- Title- This is the name given to the design by the inventor.

--- Description- This portion must describe the design and all of its features.

--- Claim- Unlike a utility patent, a design patent can only include one claim that determines the detailed aspect of the design that is distinctive and subject to protection.

--- Figures should have at least seven drawings or photographs that deliver all sides of the object design. One of the drawings or photographs should be a 3D image.

--- Figure Descriptions- Each drawing or photograph must be marked and contain a description of any extra information so that an analyst can fully comprehend the drawings.

--- Declaration- This confirms that the creator is privileged to the rights in the design.

--- Application Data Sheet-This will especially include knowledge about the designer.

Prosecution - Upon receiving the application, the USPTO will allocate a filing date. From there, an examiner will search to make sure that the design fulfills the eligibility requirements and is not already in use or already patented. The patent examination method will take several months to numerous years — depending upon the elaborateness of the filing.


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A design patent protects the appearance of a product and not the product’s function. Without any doubt, design patents are more reasonable and faster to get than utility patents. The lower cost and lower chance of refusals certainly make design patents an attractive choice for cash-strapped startups pursuing some protection. Moreover, design patents tend to issue much faster than utility patents. In addition, if the appearance of your concept or product is arguably exceptional, then it would appear wisely to file a design patent. Design patents can cover an entire product’s shape, color, and design or only a part of a product.

 A design patent covers visual ornamental features, including consumer and industrial products, packaging, medical devices, related tools, sports equipment, jewelry, and even web-based and mobile graphical user interfaces and icons. 

Design patents shield the ornamental features of a product, not its function. This allows for protecting designs with a distinctive visual appearance, regardless of whether or not the product is functionally novel. As a result, design patents can benefit larger companies looking to boost an already existing IP portfolio and for smaller companies creating their IP portfolio from the ground level.

Design patents may offer several significant benefits in creating an IP portfolio-

  • Expanding Coverage of Products

Design patents may also be utilized to cover features of designs in some illustrations when utility patents may not be available. 

  • Lowered Time and Cost

Design patents also offer considerable time and cost benefits relative to other forms of intellectual property.

  • Capability to Control Publication of Designs

Design patents suggest controlling publication timing and getting an early filing date.

The design patent protects non-functional, morally form either configuration or shape and aesthetic characteristics of a patentable subject issue. The item must yet fulfill the subject-matter needs for a patent, as the design must be inseparable from the object to which it is attached. The structure of the creation must also meet originality and requirements of non-obviousness.

 Follow the given steps to accomplish a design patent search to discover a solid prior art-


1.Searching on Product Review Websites

Product review websites are among the most suitable places to get all our queries responded to, even in prior art searches. Moreover, since the sites are loaded with product reviews of almost every product established in the market, these are some of the most suitable places to explore if any existing products might be competent in invalidating the design.

2.Product Prototype Search

While executing a design patent search, product review websites are a great place to shoot. However, they have their limitations. Product reviews are restricted to products that have already been launched or are about to be established. However, prototypes can be a dependable source for finding a stunning design before art.

3.Exploring for Prior Art in Product Design Illustrations

Each product in existence today was once a concept illustrated in a graphic or a sketch. Though a product may vary from the way it was initially designed, drawings still serve as a good form of the prior art. Hence, it is essential to look at the product designs and drawings displayed by creators or companies simulating the product to validate whether the design is unique.

4.Searching Manufacturer Samples

 Hundreds of diverse shapes and sizes are available in the market, and it is not feasible that the design might be unique. During such cases, it is essential to review websites of producers vending in the product to find whether the design proceeds with the litmus test or not.

5.Exploring on E-commerce Websites to Invalidate a Design Patent

What do you think of the word e-commerce websites? Shopping? Fantastic prices? Type? For us, these platforms are a superb advent to accomplish design searches. Almost every product in the world is in front of our eyes, remaining to validate or invalidate the client’s plan.

6.Geography Based Search

When a patent is interested in litigation, you must expand your search to Non-English geographies where many new designs are patented, conceptualized, or produced. Since most prior art searches are often restricted to European or USPTO databases, it is usually the case that designs that so far exist in different parts of the world would clear the test of creativity in the US due to a narrow search.

Patents vary widely in type, complexity, the extent of coverage, length of depiction, etc. The query of cost, therefore, relies upon certain critical factors. Perhaps the most vital cost factor is deciding between a design or utility patent. 

Designers and creators who don’t understand the design patent cost might never use it. Of course, if you hire a legal expert for the design patent process, the price is higher, but it comes with several advantages.

A right patent lawyer comprehends the process of applying. They will also know how to explore the database considerably to see if a design identical to yours already has a patent. Discovering this early in the process could save you money and time. The cost of a design patent is less than getting a utility patent. There are some reasons that inventors and innovators choose design patents instead of utility patents. 

Comprehending the design patent cost upfront helps bypass undesirable surprises. For example, some inventors find themselves in dire financial situations because they don’t know how much it would cost. 

If the fee for filing for a design patent is high, you have some options. First, you can present your product to the public and associate with investors. Some inventors choose crowdfunding websites to boost enough money to register for a design patent. Another alternative is to wait to display your concept until you can preserve enough money for the design patent cost.


You also want to comprehend the design patent cost before starting the application. While the application fee isn’t high, other prices are much involved. Working with an expert patent lawyer also adds more costs. However, the lawyer will function on the design patent through the whole process. Some designers receive a patent and then learn it doesn’t protect all the aspects of their designs. You don’t want to expend the time and money only to find that your patent won’t cover your design.