ACIP’s final report into its review of the Designs System has been published.
The report is 70 pages (including annexes) – 43 pages for the report itself; and 23 recommendations. Key recommendations include:
- investigate joining the Hague system and, if a decision is made to join, extend the maximum term of design protection to 15 years;
- introduce a grace period of 6 months before the filing date, but require an applicant relying on it to file a declaration to that effect;
- rename a registered design that has not been certified as an “uncertified design”;
- require a registered design owner to request examination by the first renewal deadline (i.e. 5 years);
- introduce a system of opposition following certification;
- improve the process for multiple designs by reducing fees in line with the ALRC’s original proposal;
- allow fiddling with the statement of newness and distinctiveness until certification;
- fix up a range of anomalies;
- specifically include the role of the designs system in any broader review of Australia’s IP framework such as that contemplated by the Competition Policy Review;
- not introducing an unregistered design right.