Filing Requirements

  1. A South African design application can be filed within 6 months from the earliest of either the –
  • Priority date; or
  • Release date – i.e. the date that the design was first made available to the public.
  1. The South African Designs Act distinguishes between two types of design registrations:
  • Aesthetic design – i.e. a design having features of shape, pattern, configuration and/or ornamentation which appeal to and are judged solely by the eye, irrespective of the aesthetic quality thereof
  • Functional design – i.e. a design having features of shape, pattern, configuration and/or ornamentation which are necessitated by the function that the article, to which the design is applied, is to perform
  1. The following are required to secure a valid filing date in respect of a design application:
  • Full name(s) and registered address(es) of each applicant
  • Priority application number(s), country and date(s)
  • Release date (if applicable)
  • Type of article(s) to which the design is applied
  • Set of design drawings
  • International Locarno classification
  • Whether the design is to be filed as an aesthetic design or a functional design, or both
  • Power of Attorney – signed by the applicant (no legalization of formal documents is required)
  • A certified copy of the priority document.  If the priority document is not in English, a certified English translation is required.
  1. South Africa has a so-called “deposit system” for designs – i.e. design applications do not undergo formal examination for the substantive registrability requirements thereof.
  2. There is no provision for opposition to the registration of a design application.
  3. Duration
  • Aesthetic designs have a maximum duration of 15 years; and
  • Functional designs have a maximum duration of 10 years –

from the date of application, or the release date (whichever is the earliest), subject to payment of annual renewal fees from the third year after the application date or the release date, as the case may be.

  1. South Africa is a member of the Paris Convention and of the Hague Convention.

Copyright - R. Gunter Attorneys. Turning ideas into assets.
Design & Hosting by
Globex Internet Services