Design application procedure in Germany

Design registration proceedings in Germany

The DPMA first checks whether all indications and documents required for the application have been received. The details of the applicant, the representation of the design and the indication of products must be submitted. It is examined whether the application complies with the legal requirements, above all, whether the representation meets the requirements as to form. Furthermore, the Design Unit checks whether the design applied for actually constitutes a design, that means, whether it shows the concrete colours, pattern and shape of a product. General ideas, concepts or designing principles cannot be protected. The design must comply with public policy and accepted principles of morality and must not constitute an improper use of any State emblems and other signs of public interest.

Please note: The DPMA does not examine whether the design applied for fulfils the requirements for protection of novelty and individual character. These requirements for protection will only be examined in case of proceedings before a civil court or during invalidity proceedings before the Design Division at the DPMA.
Registration and publication

If the application meets the legal requirements, the design is recorded in the register kept by the DPMA. The registration is then published in the electronic DPMAregister service and published in the Design Gazette (Designblatt).

Term of protection of the German design

Protection initially lasts five years, 30 months in the case of deferment of publication of the representation. You can renew design protection four times until the maximum term of protection of 25 years.

Please note: You can only renew protection of your design if you pay the fee (“renewal fee”) in full and in time. The fee must have been credited to the account of the DPMA within the payment period. If the payment is not received in time, your design right will lapse. The renewal fees are payable for each registered design, even if they are designs of a multiple application.