Argentina: Protecting industrial models and designs
Industrial models and designs consist of the shape or ornamental aspect of the industrial products. An industrial model is the three-dimensional aspect of a product, while an industrial design is the bi-dimensional aspect of such products: it is a drawing.
These models and designs can be applied to all types of industrial products, such as watches, electronic products and outfits.
Decree No 6,673/63 ratified by Law No 16,478, concerning industrial models and designs, establishes that in order to be protected industrial designs must comply with ornamental and novelty requirements and must not be forbidden by law.
Industrial models or designs, with constitutive elements related to the function of the product instead of having an aesthetic or ornamental purpose, cannot be registered. These models or designs can be protected as utility models.
The author of an industrial model or design must register it with the National Institute of Industrial Property (INPI) in order to be protected under Argentine law. The application can also be filed by his successor in title. Foreigners may apply on the basis of reciprocity.
The first registrant of an industrial model or design will be presumed its author, unless evidence proving the contrary is offered.
When more than one person creates an industrial model or design, all of them will enjoy full protection and benefits of the law, and will be able to register it. An industrial model or design holder has the right to exploit it and transfer it during a period of five years from the registration date.
The registration is renewable for two consecutive periods of five years. A registration renewal petition must be filed no less than six months before the registration expiration date in order to be admitted.
Daniel R Zuccherino