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Register, Licence And Protect Your Designs

Our design protection department is highly rated. We have a significant reputation for helping clients build value in their business and protect their vital design assets from theft or copying.

Registered designs are a valuable tool that primarily protect the shape of your product and enable you to monetise your work. We can help register your designs, licence your rights under comprehensive contracts and ultimately aid business growth.

In addition, should you need immediate assistance in the case of an infringement, our design rights lawyers have years of experience in successfully resolving disputes for clients large and small – from multinationals to startups and even individual creators, plus everything in between.

Get in touch with our team today to discuss your design protection needs.

Looking for Specialist Intellectual Property Solicitors?

For a FREE, no-obligation quote just fill in the form below and someone from our team will be in touch within one working day to discuss your requirements.

Client Testimonial

“Briffa helped us to protect our intellectual property and design work when it was infringed by a major retailer. What we particularly liked about working with Briffa was the expectation management – we understood at every stage of the process what outcome we could realistically expect.

Having gone through a similar process in the past with another legal firm, I can say from experience that this isn’t always the case. We would unreservedly recommend Briffa to any other company facing similar issues.”

– Mark Hampshire, Design Protection Client

How Can We Help?

Registering Designs

Registering your designs helps safeguard your business interests with more legal protection. It’s quite a tricky process though, so we’re here to help.

In the UK, a registered design is protected for up to twenty-five years as long as the necessary renewals are undertaken every five years. In terms of the scope of registered design protection, designers can protect various aspects of their designs, such as shape, configuration, pattern, materials and both two-dimensional and three-dimensional features of a product or design.

To register and fully protect a design legally, it must be new. Difficulties can arise where it is similar to an existing design. In legal terms, the test is whether similarities are so strong that the differences are immaterial. As you may imagine, this is not always easy to clearly determine, and many legal disputes over designs arise where businesses seek to protect previously unregistered designs. In a competitive marketplace, disputes can arise for tactical and commercial reasons, so it’s worth ensuring you have specialist legal advice from the outset.

It’s also important to flag, in the UK and EU at least, that a design can only be validly registered if the application is made within 12 months of its first public disclosure. So getting the right legal advice early on is key.

Design Infringement

Whilst we always recommend registering your designs where possible, in certain circumstances you can still take action to protect your work in the event of an infringement even if you only have unregistered rights.

This is because unregistered rights are similar to copyright (but expire far more quickly), in that a level of legal protection against copying automatically arises on the creation of novel designs.

As such, since we first set out in 1995, we’ve helped hundreds of businesses across a wide variety of industries to resolve disputes in regards to their design rights – both registered and unregistered.

Our design rights solicitors offer a free, initial consultation, allowing us to review your case and advise on the best approach for pursuing legal action. We’ll outline your next steps and how we can support you through each step of the process.

We have helped furniture designers, product designers, lighting designers, fashion designers, and even computer software businesses that produce graphical user interfaces. Regardless of your business, product or industry, we can help.

Why choose Briffa?

Our design rights solicitors have extensive knowledge and understanding of design law, which we can leverage to help any business. Over the years, we have been involved in numerous leading and groundbreaking design cases, including Magmatic Limited v PMS International Group Plc (The Trunki Case, which was ultimately decided by the Supreme Court), Farmers Build v Carriers, Parker v Tidball, Green Lane Designs v PMS Group, and Teddy Smith v Next.

We have been providing design protection services since 1995
We offer a free consultation to discuss your design rights before any fixed fee quotes are given
We have offices in the UK, the Republic of Ireland and Malta
We offer an industry leading service with short turnaround times and business-focused advice

Frequently Asked Questions

Case Study

We helped an independent furniture design company when the designs of their products were infringed by a major retailer in the UK.

Our client noticed the retailer was producing furniture with striking similarities to their own. This came a year after our client had pitched the retailer with a view to selling their products through the retailer. The pitch had been unsuccessful and no deal was struck.

It was clear the retailer had infringed the design rights of our client by copying their products, so we took action by sending a full cease and desist letter, to which the retailer replied denying any infringement.

However, the retailer accepted the similarities between the products were very close, and they would no longer sell their range once their stock had been depleted.

In agreement with our client, we decided this wasn’t quite enough. We agreed on a deal with the retailer, in so much that they would stop selling infringing products and they would disclose their sales data for the products.

Our client was then able to use the sales information to build a case for a business loan, allowing them to expand their operation by opening a larger workshop. They have since significantly increased production, allowing them to strike a supply deal with many large retailers, including the company that had copied their products originally.

Meet Our Team

Meet some of our specialist design protection solicitors who can assess your legal matters and advise on the best solution for you.

Looking for Specialist Intellectual Property Solicitors?

For a FREE, no-obligation quote just fill in the form below and someone from our team will be in touch within one working day to discuss your requirements.

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What Our Clients Say

Briffa has served hundreds of satisfied clients across a broad range of sectors since our creation in 1995. We’re proud to be leading intellectual property solicitors, but don’t just take our word for it
— here’s what our clients have to say.

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