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  • Writer's pictureRosie Burbidge

What do you think of the UK designs system?

The UK Intellectual Property Office (UKIPO) has launched a call for views on the designs system. It says this will “help us better understand how we can make the most of new opportunities and flexibilities now that we have left the EU, and how new and emerging technologies may impact the design system.”

Call for views

The call for views seeks evidence on three main areas: (1) new opportunities, (2) future frameworks and (3) better regulation. It runs for eight weeks, closing on 25 March 2022. You can respond to the call for views on the IPO website here.

The call for views will gather evidence on:

  • the complexity of the current system, and whether it should be simplified

  • novelty searching

  • what impacts post-EU exit changes to disclosure requirements for unregistered designs have had on business, and views on ways to address them.

  • if the system is flexible enough to protect designs based on new technologies, created for digital environments or using artificial intelligence

  • the introduction of a deferment provision in UK law and what that should look like

  • designers’ experience of enforcing their rights and changes they would like to see

Survey for non-IP specialists

The IPO has also published a survey on designs aimed at non-IP specialists, which closes on 7 February 2022.

This is an important opportunity to help shape the future of design protection in the UK. Design rights (registered and unregistered) are vital for businesses in industries as diverse as fashion, furniture and gaming.

Following Brexit, the UK has an opportunity to make changes to benefit designers so it will be very interesting to see what proposals emerge from this process.

To find out more about the issues raised in this blog contact Rosie Burbidge, Intellectual Property Partner at Gunnercooke LLP in London -


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