- Applicants have greater options for priority claims. Specifically, a U.S. national design application may claim priority, within six months from filing, to an IDA designating at least one country other than the U.S. Further, an IDA designating the U.S. may claim priority, within six months from filing, to any of: i) a prior foreign application, a PCT application designating at least one country other than the U.S., or a prior IDA designating at least one country other than the U.S.
- Unlike U.S. design applications, an IDA publishes "soon" after filing and becomes prior art as of its filing date. The specific timing of publication is yet to be determined.
- In line with publication, the IDA provides provisional rights for infringement (which is not available for directly filed U.S. design patents).
- The term of all design patents in the U.S. is extended from the current term of 14 from issuance to 15 years from issuance. Maintenance fees still will not be required for directly filed U.S. design patents; however, maintenance fees (payable to the International Bureau) are due for the international design patent at five year intervals. An IDA registered in countries outside the U.S. may have a term ranging up to 25 years.
- Whereas U.S. national design applications are typically limited to a single design, an IDA may include up to 100 different designs (so long as they are all in the same art classification).
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Patent Law Treaties Implementation Act of 2012 modifies U.S. design patent law
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