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How to Protect Designs Internationally with the Hague System

Whether you are a micro, small or medium-sized enterprise, the creation of attractive and distinctive designs is likely to be a central part of your business strategy. A strong design will help you to differentiate your products from those of your competitors, compete with larger companies and obtain wider market recognition and visibility.

Video – Protecting your industrial designs with WIPO's Hague System

Designs: a valuable business asset

Protecting your designs (the shape, form, patterns, lines or color of the ornamental part of your product) is essential. Why?

  • 1. The exclusive rights associated with design protection allow you to license others to use your design for a fee, creating a revenue stream for your company.
  • 2. Protection against copying and counterfeits will strengthen your competitive position and the commercial value of your business and its products. This, in turn, will stimulate business growth.
  • 3. As your SME expands its business into new global markets, the need to protect your designs on an international scale becomes paramount. This is where WIPO's Hague System comes into play.
  • 4. Research by the European Union Intellectual Property Office shows that SMEs which own design rights have 17 percent higher revenue per employee than those that do not.

Eight ways WIPO's Hague System helps you protect your designs

1. Single application

2. Central management

3. Online services

4. Market intelligence

5. Digital filing

6. Schedule publication

7. Worldwide protection

8. Customer service


WIPO's Hague System: the simple and economical solution to international design protection

Filing for and managing multiple individual national rights can be a major headache, not least because procedures and languages differ from one country to another. You may need help from local attorneys, agents and even translators. As an SME, you may not have the time, resources or expertise to dedicate to the process.

WIPO’s Hague System is the route to comprehensive international design protection.