Property rights

The patent
Along with the utility model, the patent is one of the technical property rights. It protects a device, a part of a device, a process or a substance.

The prerequisites for obtaining a legally valid patent are novelty, inventive step and industrial applicability.

The patent is an examined property right, i.e. the competent patent office examines the subject matter of the application for the aforementioned requirements for protection before granting it. This is what makes the patent so valuable.

The maximum term of a patent is 20 years, whereby fees must be paid on a regular basis. We will remind you of this.

We are not only your partner for national German industrial property rights, but are also able to obtain industrial property rights for you abroad, either via the European Patent Office or nationally in the individual countries via correspondent attorneys.

The design
A design protects the shape or colour of a product. The decisive factor for protection is the representation. Only what is recognisable on the representation(s) participates in the protection. We offer you our support in the creation of corresponding representations; graphics, also in 3D, are created by us with computer assistance.

The design is an unexamined property right, i.e. there is no examination for novelty and individual character.

The maximum duration of a design is 25 years, whereby corresponding fees must be paid to the respective offices, typically every 5 years.

Design applications abroad can be filed through the European Trademark Office in Alicante or nationally in individual countries. It is also possible to apply for an international design through WIPO in Geneva.

The utility model
In contrast to the patent, the utility model is an unexamined protective right; however, the requirements for protection are the same as for the patent.

The maximum term of a utility model is 10 years, although fees for maintenance must also be paid to the Office at certain intervals.

Unlike the patent, the utility model is not available in all countries.

However, the advantage of the utility model as an unexamined protective right compared to the patent is the rapid provision of protection. It is to be expected that a utility model will be registered within 3 months after filing the application.

In the case of both patents and utility models, the greatest attention must be paid to the drafting of the application documents, as this will determine whether or not the IP right can be used effectively against possible infringers.

The trade mark
The main types of trade marks are the word mark, the figurative mark and the word-figurative mark. For registration, the Office examines the trade mark applied for to see whether it is descriptive and distinctive of the product. Descriptive trade marks are not registered.

The Patent Office does not check for conflicting earlier registered trade mark rights. Therefore, each trade mark is subjected to an identity search conducted by us before registration.

The term of a registered trade mark is unlimited, provided that the appropriate renewal fees are paid every 10 years.

Trademark rights can be obtained not only nationally, but also EU-wide as a European trademark at the Trademark Office in Alicante. Furthermore, international trademark rights can be applied for via WIPO. We are thus your reliable partner not only on a national but also on an international level.