Design Patent Drawings
Design Patent Drawings are drawings that illustrate the appearance of an invention. They can be used in place of a written description when presenting patent applications to government authorities, such as registering a design with the United States Patent and Trademark Office or applying for trademark registration.
A design patent is a form of intellectual property protection provided by the government of individual countries to inventors who have created a new, original and ornamental design for an object. The protections afforded by design patents are effectively limited to the visual aspects of a product, rendering them less potent than utility patents and copyrights in discouraging copying of functional products while providing some protection against knock-offs.
Design patents are the most restrictive form of intellectual property protection available for new designs, and they only apply to the appearance of objects and not their structure or functionality.
Why Are Design Patent Drawings Important?
Design patents represent an opportunity for you to show prospective investors or buyers a picture of what your invention looks like and how it might be used. You will want your design patent drawings to persuade as many people as possible that you have created something new, original, and ornamental worthy of the legal protections afforded by a patent application.
Design patent drawings are essential in presenting your design patent application to the government. To file a design patent, you will need to submit pictures of your invention that illustrate the appearance of your design and show how it differs from existing designs.
A well-drawn design patent drawing is one that accurately represents what your invention looks like. Aspects to consider when drawing include the size, appearance, and use of each design part.
The US Patent Office provides information on preparing drawings for your design patent application in its “Drawings” chapter in the Manual of Patent Examining Procedure (MPEP). The MPEP is a guide for patent examiners which contains important tips and reminders about what you need to submit to the US Patent and Trademark Office to receive a patent on your design. The chapter also provides examples of what not to include in your drawings, such as alternative designs or different views of an invention after it has been created.
A professional patent illustrator or designer can help you create an effective design patent drawing. Providing them with a prototype of your invention and any other relevant information will help get the appropriate design elements included in your drawings.
Is there any specific format for Design Patent Drawings?
While there is some flexibility to how you submit your drawings in a design patent application, some general guidelines should be followed. Drawings can be submitted in color or black and white, with multiple views of the same component. But, different angles being preferred to show all possible positions the product could exist in. It is also better to submit your design drawings as vector graphics files rather than bitmap (BMP) files in most cases.
A pair of front and back views is standard for design patent drawings, although additional views can also be submitted. The view that shows an object from a user’s perspective or someone looking at it will usually be the most informative for someone seeking to understand your invention’s appearance.
Suppose you wish to submit multiple views of a single component that depict different angles or positions. In that case, it is recommended that you label each view with a number and/or letter so the examiner can quickly identify which view best represents your invention. Keep in mind that if you submit more than two views for one component, you should also include an overall assembly view for the entire product to show how each component works together.
To prepare a design patent drawing that meets the needs of the US Patent Office, you will need to know the rules for representing geometric shapes and perspectives in two-dimensional drawings. Suppose an examiner questions your drawing. In that case, they might request that you correct your patent drawings due to improper use of perspective or depictions of your invention as three-dimensional rather than two-dimensional.
A professional illustrator can help you correctly submit a design patent drawing and answer any questions posed by an examiner during the examination phase of a USPTO patent application. They will also ensure that all aspects of your design are included in the drawings to avoid any claims of your design patent being insufficiently described.
Unlike other patents, which primarily cover how an invention works, a design patent only covers the configuration of a manufactured item and not its specific workings. For this reason, drawings with complete views should be submitted for each component that shows all sides and angles of a single part or piece. This will allow examiners and judges to match your drawings with the actual product and see if they are unique.
Is there a certain amount of time available to create design patent drawings?
In most cases, you only have three months after receiving notice from the USPTO that your design patent application has received an initial filing date to submit design drawings. If the examiner requires additional time for review, they will indicate when you must send them your patent drawings and how many days you have yet to file.