Utility or Design Patent?

Utility or Design Patent?

What is the Difference?

The EDmarket Patent Showcase aims to recognize this industry’s innovative products and ideas. The program celebrates new thoughts and ideas while providing greater recognition for companies that invest time and resources in their products. Patents in the EDmarket Showcase are classified as either DESIGN or UTILITY. Let’s look at their differences.

Utility Patent

A utility patent can be for a new or useful process, machine, article of manufacture, composition of matter, or an improvement of something already in existence. It is a complex and expensive process to obtain a utility patent, giving much credibility to the patent owner. Twenty years is the life of a utility patent.

Design Patent

A design patent protects the unique visual qualities of a manufactured item. These qualities may include a distinct configuration, surface ornamentation, or both. The patented invention must have usefulness beyond its aesthetics to be legitimate. Obtaining a design patent is typically less involved and quicker than a utility patent. The lifetime of a design patent is 15 years.

Did You Know?

Certain inventions could have elements that make them eligible for both a utility and a design patent.