double_arrow Ask an Attorney


What Our Customers Say...

Based on 96 reviews
powered by Google
Robert Baker
Robert Baker
11:20 16 Apr 24
Great support from Will and the team getting my patent application to... first more
Kieran Thomas
Kieran Thomas
22:22 07 Mar 24
Robert and the team have been great to work with and we've just... successfully secured our first patent. Whenever we needed any advice or had any questions, Robert and the team were more than happy to help, and any answers were always communicated in a way which was easy to understand. Thank you all for helping us secure our first patent!read more
Christian Janke
Christian Janke
20:20 14 Dec 23
I recently had the pleasure of working with Joel Weston on what initially... seemed like a minor IPO issue, but it evolved into a comprehensive co-existence agreement with another company. I can’t express enough how much I valued Joel’s expertise, depth of knowledge, and meticulous guidance throughout this process. It was more than just legal advice; for me, it was akin to an enlightening crash course in IP law!read more
See All Reviews

Need a Product Designer?

Helpful Tips

Do I have to identify the designer?
It is possible to waive the name of the designer when filing a European Community Design, but you should be sure that you have the rights to the design


As well as obtaining British design protection and European Community design protection, it is possible to obtain design protection in many other countries. The qualified British attorneys at Albright IP can provide you with expert international design advice and guidance, and represent you before the World Intellectual Property Organization (WIPO). Albright IP also have skilled legal associates in nearly all jurisdictions worldwide to assist us in a proactive and cost-effective manner when filing your design application overseas.


There are two different ways of getting international design protection. The first is to file national design applications in each individual country of interest, and the second is to file an ‘international’ design application via the Hague System for the International Registration of Industrial Designs.

The following sections focus mainly on the Hague System. For more information on national design registration procedures, please contact us by calling +44 (0) 1242 691 801 to speak with one of our qualified attorneys.

What is the difference between design applications filed nationally or via the Hague System?

The main difference is that the Hague System allows you to file a single design application for design protection in any of the territories which are party to the Hague Agreement. Otherwise, separate design applications are needed for each country for which design protection is needed.

In either case, you need to file in all of your countries of interest within 6 months of first filing your design, and this can potentially be done more easily via a single ‘international’ application. That said, not all countries are party to the Hague Agreement, so in some cases you may only be able to obtain design protection via a direct national filing.

What is needed to proceed with an international or overseas design application?

Before filing an application for an international registered design, we need the following information:

  • Full applicant details – e.g. your full name or company name (plus state or incorporation) and address;
  • Representations – drawings or photographs of the design, suitable for quality reproduction by a photocopier, e.g. line drawings are most easily reproduced;
  • Details of any earlier “priority” applications;
  • The title or classification of the design.

For the representations, you should generally show the six views of a cube and a perspective view, but we can advise on this as necessary.

What happens when I’m ready to file an application?

Please explore the following sections for further details about international registered design applications.

Filing your application

You can file an international or overseas design application as a first application, or as a follow-up application which ‘claims priority’ from an earlier (priority) application. Most industrialised nations are party to the Paris Convention, which is an international treaty allowing the filing date of an earlier application in another country to be claimed.

We often file a design application in the UK or Europe initially, and then file one or more foreign design applications in the following 6 months, such as in the US and China, for example.

For more information, please contact us by calling +44 (0) 1242 691 801 to speak with one of our qualified British attorneys.

Countries available via the Hague System

There are currently 94 countries available via the Hague System of international design registration. Countries which are available via this route include the USA, the European Union, Japan, South Korea, as well as many individual European countries (if Europe-wide protection via the European Union is not desired), and selected African, Asian and South American countries.

For a full list of countries available via the Hague System, please visit this page and see the PDF of Contracting Parties to the Hague Agreement.

For more information, please contact us by calling +44 (0) 1242 691 801 to speak with one of our qualified British attorneys.


The time taken for a national design application to proceed to registration can vary, but normally occurs slower than UK or European design registration. For example, for a US or Chinese design application, it typically takes around a year or so to register. As with UK and European designs, renewal fees are normally then due to keep the registration in force.

For international design applications filed via the Hague System, the international part of registration occurs when the application complies with certain formal requirements, and the design then publishes. The design is then considered by the various national Offices of the countries chosen for design protection.

These Offices then examine the design application according to their national design law. Objections can be raised up to 12 months after international registration, and must be overcome to avoid the design being invalidated in those countries where objections have arisen.

For more information, please contact us by calling +44 (0) 1242 691 801 to speak with one of our qualified British attorneys.

Term of protection and Renewal

Renewals fees are often due on registered designs in order to extend the term of protection afforded to a design, beyond the initial period. This is the case for both national design registrations and an international design registration. The term of protection varies between different countries where national design registrations are concerned. For an international (Hague System) design, the initial term of protection for is 5 years.

In general, most countries offer a maximum term of registered design protection between 10 years and 25 years in length. In the US, for example, design protection lasts for 14 years from registration and no renewal fees are required. In China, design protection lasts up to 10 years, and renewal fees are due annually.

For more information, please contact us by calling +44 (0) 1242 691 801 to speak with one of our qualified British attorneys.

Through our qualified and experienced attorneys, and our highly capable network of foreign attorneys, Albright IP can fully and proactively protect your product, giving you the design rights to then secure your market or to obtain lucrative licence and assignment deals.

What if I have a lot of design variations to protect?

It is possible to file a series of designs in the UK, which can significantly lower the cost of protecting multiple designs. However, the designs in the series must be classified as the same ‘type’ of product. Separate applications would be needed for different products.

In any case, the cost of filing in foreign countries varies significantly due to differing official fees, foreign attorney costs, and design image requirements, so please contact us if you would like estimates for certain countries.

For further advice on the above, please contact us by calling +44 (0) 1242 691 801 to speak with one of our qualified British attorneys.