Can i patent a furniture design [With Tutorial]

Last updated : Sept 21, 2022
Written by : Roselia Brocious
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Can i patent a furniture design

Can furniture patent?

A designer can get a patent for their furniture design if they can prove that the furniture design or the ornamental aspects of the invention are new and worthy of a patent. A furniture design that proves it is something new and revolutionary should be able to get a patent.

Can you patent cabinet design?

"Issued for a new, original, and ornamental design embodied in or applied to an article of manufacture, it permits its owner to exclude others from making, using, or selling the design." Design patents can be used to protect the design of physical objects, such as clocks, clothing, cabinets, sunglasses, and much more.

Can you patent a design idea?

Many people ask: can ideas be patented? The short answer is no. Unfortunately, despite what you may have heard from late night television commercials, there is no effective way to protect an idea with any form of intellectual property protection. Copyrights protect expression and creativity, not innovation.

What qualifies for a design patent?

To qualify for a design patent, the subject must be new in the sense that no single, identical design exists in the prior art, it must satisfy the ornamental standards, and it must be original to the inventor or inventors seeking protection.

How can I protect my furniture design from being copied?

You can protect your furniture designs by making sure those you show them have a contract to view them and not copy them; also, make sure the designs are all dated and documented to show they are your original designs.

Is copying furniture legal?

Some aspects of furniture design are considered unique artistic endeavors protected by copyright law, just like a sculpture or an architectural plan. However, the functional or utilitarian aspect of furniture design would be covered by patent law rather than by copyright.

How much does it cost to patent a design?

The basic filing fee for a design patent application is $760 for a large entity. A small entity's fee is $380, while a micro-entity's fee is $190. If you hire a patent lawyer to assist with preparing documents and filing the design patent application, the cost could be around $1,500-$3,000.

How hard is it to get a design patent?

Design patents have always been easy to obtain, indeed, far easier to obtain than a utility patent. Of course, as with many things in life and with virtually everything in the realm of intellectual property law, the easier something is to obtain the less valuable it is to own.

How much does it cost to get a patent?

A patent can cost from $900 for a do-it-yourself application to between $5,000 and $10,000+ with the help of patent lawyers. A patent protects an invention and the cost of the process to get the patent will depend on the type of patent (provisional, non-provisional, or utility) and the complexity of the invention.

What is a poor man's patent?

A poor man's patent is essentially writing out a description of your invention and then mailing that written description to yourself. This postmarked envelope supposedly acts to create the date of your invention as the date this written description was postmarked.

What things Cannot be patented?

  • literary, dramatic, musical or artistic works.
  • a way of doing business, playing a game or thinking.
  • a method of medical treatment or diagnosis.
  • a discovery, scientific theory or mathematical method.
  • the way information is presented.
  • some computer programs or mobile apps.

How can I patent a design for free?

There are two ways you can actually patent an invention for free, sort of. If you cannot afford an agent or attorney, look to the Patent Pro Bono Program or the Law School Clinic Certification Program, both provided by the USPTO. The Patent Pro Bono Program pairs registered patent agents or attorneys with inventors.

Is it worth getting a design patent?

Design patents are worth it if you have a design that makes your product or article sell. Said differently, if your design encourages your customers to purchase your product, then obtaining a design patent for your product may be worth investing your time and money.

How long do design patents last?

For design patents, the period is 14 years from date of issuance. (Design patents are issued for ornamental designs of functional items). For plant patents, the period is 17 years from date of issuance.

Do design patents expire?

Many inventors don't realize that a design patent has a term. After the 15-year period, the patent expires. Upon expiration, you cannot renew a patent. It simply becomes public domain.

How do you legally protect an original design?

There are several ways to protect your artifacts, designs, products, services and systems and these are: copyrights, trademarks, trade secrets, design registration, utility patents, industrial design rights, trade dress.

How can I protect my design legally?

One potential method of securing a product design is to apply for a copyright, which is a type of intellectual property protection. The purpose of a copyright is to protect an artist's work, and you can apply for a copyright even if you never intend to publicly reveal your creation.

How do I make sure no one steals my design?

  1. Watermark your work. The most obvious way you can prevent your creative work being abused is to watermark it.
  2. Show off. The best way to spot plagiarism is to let the community at large do it for you.
  3. Retain proof.
  4. Register your work.
  5. Explain the terms.

Can I copy a design and sell it?

It is illegal to sell, publicize and publish a copy of an artwork unless you have prior permission from the copyright owner. It is also illegal to publish and sell an artwork that's substantially similar to another original work of art.

How much of a design can I copy?

The 30 Percent Rule in Copyright Law.

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Can i patent a furniture design

Comment by Lynsey Faver

hey everybody Steve McKee here I'm with patent attorney Damon Calley giving you the real juice here you guys and by the way if you need any type of help with any intellectual property from patents and all that other stuff make sure you call Damon he's inventor friendly he will do you right okay can I just even can I jump in here real just real quick yeah you view inventors who call me please speak clearly and slowly your phone number because half the time I cannot tell what you're saying and I can't return your phone call if I don't know what the number is okay thanks sounds like something sounds like me all right here we go I want to talk about design patents all right and the reason why I want to talk about design patents it's because I filed a couple and I think it's something we need to be aware aware of especially all these field tools that help us protect our creativity so first of all Damon what is a design patent a design patent as opposed to a utility patent covers the ornamental aspects of your design so it doesn't cover any of the use of it it doesn't make any difference how you use it or in what location or whatever it is simply the ornamental aspects of your invention okay well you know what's great about that I was in the guitar pick business and we had this one very big seller and it was a very unique design and it was called grave picker it was a guitar pick of the shape of a skull and we finds a design patent on that and because we thought the skull was such a unique shape would be hard for something to get around it so we thought that and that's it well that's a great idea Steve in that and let's just maybe delve into that just a little bit more let me ask you was it expensive to do that no okay and was it fairly quick or was it you know like three or four years like a utility application it was really quick excellent and you got it which is it speaks to how easy it is to get the design pattern if nobody else is out there so the process is very it's inexpensive and it happens you know fairly fairly easily so that's I mean that's really the upside of the design patent it happens very quickly so you know you can get some protection for your intellectual property you know if you need it quickly now what's the downside so the downside is it doesn't cover any of the use so you've got none of the use of your pick as a pick as a guitar pick or is really any kind of pick for anything you only got the ornamental aspects of it so anybody wanting to get around that just has to change the shape of it and they're around your design application ya know it's got to be unique you know there's a time where I didn't you know if that design patents who cares but I've seen aware it can work especially if you've got the certain design that's being manufactured that seems to work that that it's different than anything else that's out there that's got that unique design it seems like it's pretty smart I have a student now that's in the packaging industry and there's some prior art prior patents and he's dead his differently and there's really a particularly people want so I'm recommending for him to file a design patent because I think it's smart I think so too it's really I think design patents really come into their own when you're in a crowded area so packaging is super crowded there's all kinds of packaging patents out there and if he's changing something to sort of make a brand identification or a product identification that's perfect subject matter for a design patent application now I've got something else that has a design patent on it and damn it I can't believe it does all right okay give it to us okay I I have this these spin cups they've been around for a while and you know they do this but you don't want a design patent on this because rotating labels they've been around for a long time I have 20 patents on rotating labels but I learned that the shape of the cup why these little lips are crackle if you don't have these it doesn't work right and so your design patent covers that little lip it does not cover the fact that it captures your label so I mean it's really good it's super easy you don't have to worry about any of the prior art with respect to the use of it but now you've got some protection for this thing that you may not have been able to get you know otherwise I'll take demon we we must have gone through ten different iterations of how to find this lip on here that would actually hold I would actually hold a sleeve on that's awesome it doesn't seem like it's like well that should be really simple but no it's the combination of both it's what really made it work so well so did you did you and your you know your patent attorney did you guys explore the utility patent for that and just decide hey there's too much art here or we can't get that or well had that process go for you well after a while this have written there's original patent on this that I filed that was going to come off patent and it's old it's been around for a long time so I find it another way to have some ownership to it right and when I first filed it I didn't know about these certain lips I didn't get it you know right because I hadn't manufacture it yet in fact I don't even care about this yeah but years later rat one was ready to expire someone wanted the darn thing it's like okay so an excellent way to get you know extend out your IP that's a perfect way to do that that's awesome let me tell you where I made a mistake though Damon yeah I drew it up my office drew it up we sent it in and got rejected okay because so you got to draw them correctly right yes all right not not a trivial task is surprisingly no and I'm gonna say hey James please put up a drawing of the cup so they can see what a actual design patent on this particular cup because it has to be done a certain way and I learned the hard way on that one I thought I could get it get around it but I couldn't so anyway Damon thank you very much everyone I want you to think about a couple things here when you're navigating the intellectual property landscape IP what's been done before you and if you're looking for something that will give you an edge don't disregard a design patent I use it a couple different ways the two examples I gave you that will give you some form of I should be protected okay truly yes or no who knows because who wants to go to court but it's gonna make somebody think twice right exactly so okay all right everyone thank you very much for listening Steven Keeny Damon here thanks for watching you

Thanks for your comment Lynsey Faver, have a nice day.
- Roselia Brocious, Staff Member

Comment by verpestu

so you've got a design that you want to protect this video is going to answer all your questions about how to patent a design be sure to watch all the way to the end because we give you some really important information about the intricacies of patenting designs because it's not always intuitive so if you're new to the channel my name is dylan adams i am a patent attorney and author of the best-selling book patents demystified which is an insider's guide to protecting ideas and inventions used by inventors and entrepreneurs worldwide including top universities like harvard stanford and mit you might also recognize me from being featured on cnbc's hit show the profit with marcus lemonis so in my patent practice and as a patent attorney i work with clients of all sizes including fortune 100 companies startups and shark tank companies and this channel really helps give you the inside information the secrets if you will on how i help these clients be successful so be sure to subscribe to the channel click that little bell icon so that you get notifications of when new great videos are coming out so yeah let's go ahead and jump right in to the content so you've got an awesome design that you want to protect now it's important to kind of figure out what sort of designs are protectable and how they're protectable and let's first talk about intellectual property so designs are protectable by intellectual property and there are four main types of intellectual property there are trade secrets there are copyrights there are patents and there are trademarks and you know certain type of designs are going to be protectable by most of these so with trade secret trade secrets is going to protect designs that you know you aren't going to be publicly disclosing things you know but while while they're still in development trade secret may protect those things but that's not really why not why we're here i mean we're talking about designs these are going to be products that you're going to be uh selling these are going to be public things so it's probably going to be more of a copyright trademark or patent protection that's going to be relevant um so designs you know things like artistic works those can be protected by copyright trademarks there can be some trademark protection for designs if you have um you know like a specific trade dress or say you know a logo there can be designs like that that can be predictable but what we're talking about here is design patents patenting designs of things and there are two types of patents that are are going to be relevant here both a utility patent and a design patent it's a bit of a misnomer and something that gets people confused they think well i want a patent a design of something i need a design patent which is not which is typically honestly not the case usually what they want is actually a utility patent so let me tell you about utility patents versus design patents and why most the time a utility patent is going to be with the way to go mo some of the time a design patent as that application is going to be where they go and there are some cases where you're actually going to want to file both on the same product okay so here's the thing with design patents they cover a single ornamental design of an art article of manufacture so there's a couple important things there one is it has to be useful articles um it's going to be you know anything you know that is utilitarian in nature and there are some things that are kind of surprisingly um you know fall in that category you know things like like furniture furniture is very artistic at the same time you know the design of furniture that would be something you would have to protect with a design patent but with design patents they are very specific to one design if you look at a design pattern or a design patent application it is line drawings of every perspective you know like left right front side top bottom maybe perspective views it's going to be one of one design so design patents they're good in the sense that they're pretty easy to get through they're relatively inexpensive but they're only protecting that one design okay that's why design patents don't work a lot of times for most products because yeah you may have protection on that one design but that's not what's really important the the important thing is the variation of design it's about the functionality that's where utility patents come in so design patents they cover a picture you know you have a picture of one specific design utility patents they cover things with with words yes you'll have descript descriptions and drawings in a utility patent application but you're not limited to one specific look you can have different variations there can be really broad utility patents that cover a lot of different variations or there can be some really narrow narrow utility patent applications that you know effectively have the same scope as a design application because they are so narrow and so specific um that you know it's essentially you know one very specific design that that's covered but a lot of times utility paths are going to be a lot more powerful like i said in addition to covering you know sort of the physical configuration of things you know in that sense it's kind of covering a design as well it can cover methods of using something methods of manufacture so utility patents have the ability to cover functionalities in addition to physical configurations of things and they're able to do it a lot more broadly so then why wouldn't you always file a utility application utility applications there are a lot it's a lot higher of a bar to get a utility patent application issued you have to have a product that is new and non-obvious compared to everything that is out there with the design usually it's pretty easy as long as there's no one exact design that's exactly what you have you're going to be able to get your design patent application through and usually pretty quickly whereas with a utility application you know there's going to be more of a negotiation you're going to be trying to get the broadest scope possible it's not just a binary thing where you have a patent or you don't with utility patents it's you know do you have a broad patent that covers a lot of variations or is it really narrow and specific to you know only one very narrow design which is which is not a good thing so that's why there's a negotiation there's going to be rejections and there's going to be a lot more prior that's going to be relevant to a broad variety of things and that's why the process is going to be a lot longer equals a lot more expensive and it's a lot more difficult if you have a design that is fairly generic and it's something where it would be obvious to do in view of other things or if you know general designs or functionalities of that thing are out there you know your application may be rejected and you may not be able to overcome those rejections so that's the only downside with utility patent applications so the takeaway here is that designs can be covered by both design applications and by utility

Thanks verpestu your participation is very much appreciated
- Roselia Brocious

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