Area of Law: Intellectual Property
Answer Number: 327
Using an Industrial Design symbolRegion: Ontario Answer Number: 327
Once an industrial design has been registered, a special mark can be placed on the article to let other people know the article’s design is protected. The symbol for a registered industrial design is a capital “D” inside a circle, and should be followed by the name of the owner. Although the Industrial Design Act does not require that industrial designs be marked, it is a good idea to mark your design.
Marking may deter other people from infringing or copying your industrial design. Also, if someone does copy your design, a court can order them to stop using your design and also to pay you compensation. If the product is not marked to show that the design is registered, then the court may only order the person to stop using your design and you may not be compensated for all the loss you may have suffered because of the infringement.
If someone copies or imitates a design that you are the registered owner of, and you want to take legal action, the time limit for starting a lawsuit on industrial design infringement is three years. However, delay can result in prejudice to you so you will probably want to stop the infringement as soon as possible.
For more information about industrial designs, refer to the Canadian Intellectual Property Office.
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