We recommend you to perform a search covering previous designs and gain information on registered designs prior to filing a design application. The German Patent and Trade Mark Office does not check whether similar or identical designs are already registered. Possible infringement of earlier rights is later determined by the civil courts when there is a dispute.
You can conduct free searches for German registered designs in the DPMAregister database. In addition to legal status information on existing designs you can also view representations of the images of designs.
You can search the databases of the Office for Harmonization in the Internal Market or of the World Intellectual Property Organization. Searches for Community designs or internationally registered industrial designs are important because these designs may conflict with your German design right.
For more information on searches, please see our information leaflet Design Searches Online
You can order certified and non-certified register excerpts. You can obtain these excerpts against payment of a fee of 20 and 12 EUR, respectively. Subject to a fee of 15 EUR you can obtain paper excerpts on the designs portfolio of a given applicant.
With a request for file inspection you can order copies of the case file of a design registration.
© 2013 Deutsches Patent- und Markenamt | Last updated 11/12/13