An industrial design is the ornamental or aesthetic aspect of an article. The design may consist of three-dimensional features such as the shape and configuration of an article, or two-dimensional features, such as pattern and ornamentation. The design features must be applied to an article by any industrial process or means of which the features in the finished article appeal to eye.
Filing of an industrial design should be made at the earliest possible time or before an article is disclosed to the public. Prior disclosure will destroy the novelty of the design. So extreme care should be exercised to ensure secrecy of the design.
A registered industrial design confers the owner of a registered design the exclusive right to make, import or sell or hire out any article to which the design has been applied. Other users should obtain the consent of the rightful owner before using the design. The owner of a registered design has the right to take legal action against an infringer within 5 years from the act of infringement.
Period of protection
A registered industrial design is given an initial protection period of 5 years from the date of filing and is extendable for a further four consecutive terms of 5 years each. The maximum protection period is 25 years.
An industrial design registered in Malaysia is only protected in Malaysia . In order to have your designs protected in other countries, applications for registration will have to be filed within six month from the earliest date when it was first filed in any of the Paris Convention member countries.