Go to home page
Protect your trade marks and designs in the European Union

Protect your intellectual property in the European Union

Application and Registration Procedure


The fastest and easiest way to file a registered Community design is to apply online.

However, an application may also be made by fax, by post or by handing in the application personally at the EUIPO reception desk during opening hours.
If you file by fax, please note that the quality of the design’s depiction is likely to be quite poor (especially if photographs are used) since this technology is not adequate for the transmission of images.
Filing by fax should therefore be avoided in general. If, however, you still wish to file by this means, make sure you send a paper copy within 1 month from the date of reception of the fax. The examiner will wait for a confirmation copy for up to 1 month before processing the application further.
The application for registration must be filed together with payment of the required fees.
You must complete the application form (available on the EUIPO website) and include a clear depiction of the design. This may be a drawing or a photograph.
The application must include the payment of the requisite fees. These vary in accordance with the request, for example whether deferment of publication is required.

For further information on how to apply, please consult:

Any natural person or legal entity from any country in the world may file an application.
You can find additional information in the ownership section of our website.
Further information can be found in the Guidelines, Part B, Examination, Section 2, Formalities, paragraph 2.

The Locarno Classification is the international classification system for industrial designs that is administered by the World Intellectual Property Organization (WIPO). The European Union Intellectual Property Office (EUIPO) has compiled a list of products, known as the EuroLocarno list, which is based on the Locarno Classification, for classifying goods indicated both in registered Community designs (RCDs) and in RCD applications.
When indicating the goods in a design application, applicants are strongly advised to use the terms from the Locarno Classification or EuroLocarno in order to avoid delays in the registration procedure caused otherwise by the need to translate the terms submitted.
Further information on Locarno Classification (designs).

When filing a specific design for the first time, the owner is granted a 6 month period from the date of first filing during which the owner can claim priority in his application for Community design before the EUIPO. If you claim priority, and somebody files an application after you your application will prevail over theirs.

Yes. Anyone who has filed a design application in any state that is party to the Paris Convention for the Protection of Industrial Property or to the Agreement establishing the World Trade Organization may claim priority. The subsequent filing with the EUIPO must be made within 6 months of the first application. The documentation relating to the right of priority claimed should contain a depiction of the prior design.
Even if the registration of an RCD is rejected, a subsequent filing with the EUIPO can be made claiming the priority of the rejected prior RCD application.

Further information on design filing tips and best practices.

For further information on how to apply, see the Guidelines, Examination of Applications for Registered Community Designs.

For traditional filing, there is no limit. An applicant may file as many designs as they wish in one multiple application, the only condition being that the products to which the design is applied belong to the same Locarno class, in other words that they pertain to the same type of goods. This condition does not apply when an application is for ornamentation.

Please consult our website for further information on the design and its product(s).

For further information on how to apply, see the Guidelines, Examination of Applications for Registered Community Designs.

The design should be represented by at least one view, but up to seven views per design can be submitted, plus three extra unprotected views. The same applies to multiple applications, with up to seven views permitted for each design applied for. In cases where more than seven views are submitted, the EUIPO will disregard any extra views for registration and publication purposes and will take the views in the consecutive order as numbered by the applicant (Article 4(2) CDIR).

Further information on design filing tips and best practices.
Further information can be found in the Guidelines, Examination of Applications for Registered Community Designs.

For further information visit our Apply now section.

The maximum number of views taken into account in an RCD application before the EUIPO is seven. If you wish to use the design application as a basis for a priority claim in a subsequent design application in another registration system, the surplus views will be archived in the RCD application file. If you ask the EUIPO for a certified copy of your RCD application to submit as the basis for your priority claim, this copy will contain all the information relating to the RCD application, including the surplus views.

For further information visit our Apply now section.

Applications are mainly checked for formalities. There is no in-depth substantive examination, except to verify that the application is for a design and that the design is not contrary to public policy or morality. Unlike the EU trade mark system, there is no opposition procedure.
A design application will be examined and if it meets the formal requirements the design is then registered and published immediately, or following the deferment period (upon request of the holder or their representative) within 27 months of the application date or of the priority date.
If the application does not meet the formal requirements, an objection (usually called a ‘deficiency letter’ that contains the inconsistency to be remedied and sets a time limit for the reply) will be raised. This may lead to the amendment of the application or to its refusal if the objections raised are not addressed satisfactorily. Failure to reply to the deficiency letter within 2 months can lead to the refusal of the application, to the deletion of certain views or to the loss of the claim of the priority right.

Further information regarding the registration process.

After registration, the application is either published or subject to deferment of publication for up to 30 months from the filing date or from the date of the earliest priority claimed.
The request for deferment must be made on the initial application form; later requests will not be accepted.
This period of confidentiality affords the applicant an opportunity to further develop their marketing strategy or to finalise the preparations for production without competitors being aware of the design in question.
Upon registration, only very basic details will be supplied in the publication. The substance of the design (views, indication of product and classification) will remain confidential. This can be of vital importance in a sector such as fashion or the automobile industry where it is necessary to protect designs from competitors while arranging the production of the design into the final product. If at any time within the period of 30 months the applicant wishes to cancel the deferment, they can do so by asking the EUIPO to publish the design. This grants designers and businesses a great deal of control over their creations.
At the end of the deferment period, the holder or their representative is responsible for requesting the full publication by paying the publication fees. If the holder fails to do so before the deadline (27 months at the latest from the date of filing or from the date of priority, if any), the registered Community design right will not be published and will be lost.

Further information on how to ask for deferment.

For further information, see the Guidelines, Examination of Applications for Registered Community Designs.

Yes, you have to be logged-in in order to use the e‑filing form. If you do not have a username and a password, please sign up.

Yes. The online application form is available in all of the EU languages.

You will find the information about online applications in the Apply for a design section of the website.

You cannot sign the application; you only need to specify the name of the person authorising the payment of the application fees.
For more information regarding how to apply, see the Guidelines, Examination of Applications for Registered Community Designs.

Yes. Documents in support of a priority claim may be filed as an attachment to the electronic application form. They must be in PDF format. Attachments in other formats will be deemed not filed. Except for views and priority documents, no other documents or information may be sent as attachments.

The EUIPO does not accept missing documents sent by email.
If necessary, any missing documents relating to the application should be sent by ordinary mail, quoting your references and the electronic number received via the online system. But, if possible, wait until you receive the letter of receipt specifying the application number of the design you have applied for before you contact the EUIPO about your electronic application.

For more information regarding how to apply, see the Guidelines, Examination of Applications for Registered Community Designs.

Yes. You should receive a confirmation of receipt when the EUIPO receives your electronic application. This confirmation should contain a reference number (e.g. e 0000000456982). This is not the registered Community design (RCD) application number. The RCD application number will be sent to you later, together with the letter of acknowledgement of receipt of the RCD application sent by the Designs Department. We recommend that you print a copy of this confirmation.

If you do not receive the electronic receipt, it is likely that the application has not been sent correctly or received by the EUIPO. Please contact the Information Centre as soon as possible.

Registered Community designs (RCD) are valid for a period of 5 years from the date of filing of the application. You can renew RCDs every 5 years, up to a total term of 25 years from the date of filing.
The renewal fee depends on the period for which an RCD is renewed.

For further information regarding renewals fees, please consult the fees and payment section.

The request for renewal must be submitted within a period of 6 months ending on the last day of the month in which protection ends. The fees must also be paid within this period. Failing this, you may submit the request and pay the fees within an extended 6‑month period following the last day of the month in which protection ends, provided that an additional fee is paid within this extended period.
The renewal will be registered and take effect from the day following the date on which the existing registration expires, providing the request for renewal complies with all the requirements.

Further information on how to manage your RCD.

The questions and answers provided on this page serve a purely informative purpose and are not a legal point of reference. Please consult the European Union Trade mark and Community Design Regulations or Trade mark / Design Guidelines for further details.

For more information about how the Office handles your personal data, please consult the Data protection notice.

This site uses cookies to offer you a better browsing experience, including for anonymized analytics. Find out more on how we use Cookies.