Design applications are filed at the Norwegian Patent Office, optionally through a representative such as CURO AS. The application form must be accompanied by a proper illustration of the design object.
In some cases, the originator ends up with numerous variants of a particular product, e.g. having a slightly varying shape and size and with different combination of elements. These individual designs can be combined in one registration and thus one registration number. The conditions for such a “joint registration” are that the individual designs belong to the same class in accordance with the Locarno classification. This will reduce the costs and simplify the procedure of registering a large quantity of products.
All parts of a joint registration must be included at the time of filing. It is not possible to amend a design application in the terms of increasing number of designs or amending individual designs after filing.
According to the design code, a “design” is the look of a product or a part of a product followed by the characterizing features of the lines, contours, colors, shapes, structure or material of the product or product ornament.
A product is an industrially or handmade item, including parts intended to be included in a composite product, packaging, equipment, graphical symbols and typographic fonts, but not computer programs. A composite product is a product comprising several exchangeable components, enabling the product to be dismantled and re-assembled. However, in order to register a design, it is mandatory to illustrate the design applied form in the end user’s normal utilization of the product.
Handling of application
A design application is handled by an officer at the Patent Office. According to the design code of May 1, 2003, the handling only involves reality checks; the application is not examined with regard to novelty. The formality check involves classification, quality and number of illustrations, and other formal requirements.
If desirable, the Patent Office may conduct additional examination of the design. Then, the Patent Office will perform a search with regard to novelty and individual character compared to former design registrations.