8 January 2016

UKIPO Consultation on Significantly Reduced Fees for UK Registered Designs

On 7th January 2016 the UKIPO launched a public consultation on a new fee schedule for UK registered designs. If implemented, the proposed new fees will dramatically reduce the cost of filing and maintaining UK registered designs, particularly where multiple designs are included in a single application.

The fee reductions come as a result of the lower operational costs of the new online filing system, and are also part of the UK government’s wider drive to encourage the filing of design applications, as outlined by Baroness Neville-Rolfe in her foreword to the consultation document. 

The proposed reduced fees will make it significantly cheaper to file registered design applications that cover multiple aspects of a product as separate designs, thus allowing broad protection to be achieved for a particular product with much lower costs. In particular, this will permit filing of further designs without the costs quickly accumulating, for example further designs may focus on different parts of a product, colour and non-colour views, or showing different features in dashed line.

Renewal fees are also being significantly reduced, so it will be much cheaper to maintain UK registered designs for their full 25 year term.

The below table compares the current application fees to the proposed new application fees:

 Existing FeeProposed New Fee
Single Design£60£50
Further designs in same application£40 per designN/A
Up to 10 designsN/A£70
Further group of 10 designs (eg 11-20)N/A£20

Below are some examples of the difference for filing multiple design applications under the existing fees and the proposed new fees:

No. Designs in ApplicationExisting FeeProposed New Fee
3 designs£140£70
14 designs£580£90
25 designs£1060£110

Note that the reduced application fees will only be available for applications filed online (the paper application costs are staying the same).

The below table shows the proposed reduced renewal fees in comparison to the existing renewal fees:

 Existing feeProposed New Fee
First renewal fee (5th year)£130£70
Second renewal fee (10th year)£210£90
Third renewal fee (15th year)£310£110
Fourth renewal fee (20th year)£450£140

The proposal also includes a slight cost reduction for requests to invalidate a design registration (reduced to £48 from £50).

The consultation can be found here, and it ends on 29th January 2016, so be sure to respond quickly if you have any comments to make.

If you would like further information on UK registered or unregistered designs, please contact us.