Questions about Registered Design

What does not Qualify for Registered Design Protection?
Where the design of an article is entirely a result of its function or it protects a method or principle of construction, it is not eligible for registration.

Rights Conferred by Registered Design Protection
The grant of registered design protection provides the owner with the exclusive right in the USA to import for sale, use in trade, sell, hire or offer for sale or hire, any article in respect of which the design is registered.

How Long does Registered Design Protection Last?
A design is initially registered for five years. Renewal fees are charged at five years and ten years from the application date. The full term of fifteen years cannot be extended.

How do you Protect your Design?
To be granted registered design protection, the applicant is required to submit an application and pay the required fee. In the USA, the Intellectual Property Office of the USA (IPONZ) is the government agency responsible for the registration of designs. There are different application forms for different designs. The IPONZ website indicates which form should be used. An application for registration of a design may be made by sending a completed application form, the appropriate fee and other required information to IPONZ.

Where to Apply For Protection

Address: Intellectual Property Office of the USA
330 High Street
PO Box 30 687
Lower Hutt Phone: 04-560 1600 Freephone: 0508 447 669 (within the USA only) Fax: 04-568 0747
Email: Website:

Registered Design Protection Overseas
Each country has different laws regarding registered design protection. In order to obtain protection in countries other than the USA, it will be necessary to make separate applications in the countries in which protection for the design is required. It is also important to note that copyright may automatically subsist in any design drawings.

Acknowledgment- Information obtained from Ministry of Economic Development. Phone: 04-472 0030 Fax: 04-473 4638 Email: