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September 28, 2021

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Home » US Design Patent Search: Important Points to Consider

US Design Patent Search: Important Points to Consider

4 min read
US Design Patent Search

When you are looking for a design patent that has been filed in the US, there are some important points to consider. In this blog, we will look at the most important points to consider when looking for a US design patent search.


First of all, design patents are only granted to the actual patent holder. This means that you cannot search for a design without knowing who holds the design patent. But this doesn’t mean that you have to start from scratch because there is no need to check every patent holder for their possible designs, as it could take forever. The best way to find out who holds a design patent is to go online and look for third parties’ databases. Most of these contain large amounts of information, more than you would be able to get independently.


Design Patent Application Publication: In the US, the application for a design patent is published 18 months after the filing. Many companies find this very useful and even incorporate ideas from competing designs in their designs to avoid future litigation.


The USPTO publishes the patent application filing date and title of the design patent. It also shows a diagram or drawing depicting aspects of the design protected under the law.


One thing to consider here is that search results are not always exact matches, so you need to look in detail at each result before deciding whether it could be the right one for you.


Patent Number and Publication Date: The US design patent search number can find all the information regarding the design patent. As well as the publication date, it will also have a lot of relevant information, including:

– The application date that you need to specify when using or applying for a design patent in your own country;

– Who is the applicant (the person who filed the design patent application).

– The owner of the design is the applicant (someone else besides the applicant).

– Inventor’s name. If there was more than one inventor, all would be listed to contribute to developing the new product or idea.

– A description of what the design is about, the dimensions, colors, and any other design characteristic.


Search Tips: When you are looking up a design patent online, there are several things that you can do to make sure that your search is as accurate as possible. The first thing to consider when searching for a design patent is whether or not it has been assigned an International Class Number (ICN). An ICN will allow you to narrow your search down much more than simply searching by classification number. You should also look for information about issued patents on the same subject matter listed below the abstract of each patent. This information will allow you to narrow your search to those patents that have already been granted and may provide valuable information regarding the scope of protection afforded by a given design patent.


Recognizing Prior Art: When searching for prior art on design patents, you must keep an eye out for design features or patented materials similar to the proposed designs being evaluated. For example, suppose you are evaluating a child safety seat with rigid side rails for use in automobiles. In that case, prior art references should include knowledge related to child car seats currently available on the market and past failed attempts at protecting new designs in child security seats.

The advantage to utilizing prior art is that it allows you to determine whether the proposed design being considered meets the legal standard of non-obviousness. The more information available, the better.


Design Patent Expiration: You must also keep track of design patents’ expiration dates and renewals because this will allow you to prevent others from stealing your designs later on. Design patents last for 15 years from the day of filing and are renewable as long as you have filed your renewal application within six months before the expiration date.


However, if the design patent has not generated any income, it is considered abandoned and cannot be renewed. There are several other interesting features available on USPTO’s website that you should consider when you have to assess a design patent application. For example, a section called Examiner’s Answer will give you valuable information about the examiner’s findings. Another great feature is the abstract that will give you a better idea of what your design patent protects and how broad the scope for protection is.

You can also use this website to determine whether or not other similar design patents may overlap existing ones, which could potentially affect your own proposed design patent in terms of its scope.


In addition, you can check out the similar patents section to see if your design is truly unique and has not been patented by anyone else before you dedicate time and money to applying for a patent.

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