What is the difference between a Patent and Design?

What is Design & Patent law in India, and What is the difference between a Patent and Design?


We use many different brands of products in our daily lives, as well as inventions created by human minds, which are referred to as Intellectual Property. Patents and Designs are subsets of Intellectual Property, and we are prone to mixing them up. However, these two are diametrically opposed. Design protection and patent protection are not the same thing. This blog will help you with the primary difference between a Patent and Design.


Before going through the differences, let’s have a quick view at “What is Patent and Design?”

What is Patent?

A Patent is a federally awarded privilege that allows an inventor to prevent others from selling, creating, or utilizing their invention for a set period. The Patent system is intended to promote one-of-a-kind and societally beneficial inventions. The Constitution gives the authority to grant Patents, and Patents are governed by Federal Statutes and Rules.

Patent Laws in India

A patent can only be issued for a new and beneficial invention, according to Indian Patent Law. The invention must be related to the substance, object, or machine of a manufacturer, or the manufacturing process for an article. A patent can also be obtained to protect the development of a new product or manufacturing process.


In the case of medicine or drugs, as well as certain chemical groups, no patent is issued for the substance itself, even if it is novel; however, both the manufacturing process and the substance are patentable. The first inventor or the person who has acquired title from him must file a genuine patent application, and the right to file a patent application must be assignable.

What is Design?

The goal of product design is to protect its aesthetic appearance. Shape, ornamentation, configuration, patterning, and colour should all be distinct in appearance.


To ensure that design rights protect a product’s appearance, the product must:

  • A real and tangible product, rather than an idea or concept
  • That is produced on a large scale, whether manufactured or hand-crafted.

Because design rights only protect the aesthetic appearance of a product or item, they exclude brand names and logos. If you want to protect your brand name or logo design, you will need a Trademark.

Difference between a Patent and Design rights

Patents and design rights both provide protection, but they cover very different aspects of a new invention. The following describes the difference between patents and design rights.





Registration cost

Patent applications necessitate extensive preparation and detailed specifications, they can take a significant amount of time and maybe more expensive than design applications.

In general, registering a design is less expensive than registering a patent. Furthermore, it takes less time than Patent Registration.

Renewal fees

Annual renewal fees are required to maintain the enforceability of your patent.

The renewal fee for design rights, on the other hand, only needs to be paid once, five years after the date the design application was filed.

Criteria taken into account

    • Utility
    • Specificity
    • Non-obviousness
    • Non-functional
    • Unique

Different types of protection

A patent protects the function, method, or method of operation of a device. In layman’s terms, a patent safeguards ideas and concepts.

A design safeguards its appearance. When a design is registered, it protects the appearance of a product or item.

Protection period

A registered patent, on the other hand, can be protected for a maximum of 20 years. Furthermore, the maximum period of protection for a patent registered for a ‘pharmaceutical substance’ is 25 years.

The maximum protection period is ten years from the date an application for registration of a design right is filed.


Any inventor can apply for a Patent Registration.

Unlike patents, inventors and designers can apply for design rights for their products or items.


Soft drink invention, chemical components, formula, and method.

The soft drink’s unique shape or outer appearance, as well as its outlook.

Final thoughts

If you have created anything original, distinct, or creative, you should always consider preserving your hard work. Due to the fact that one protects an individual’s idea and concept and the other safeguards their outward appearance, it is essential for an individual to register both a patent and a design.

Categories: Articles
Zarana Mehta: Zarana Mehta is an MBA in Finance from Gujarat Technology University. Though having a masters degree in Business Administration, her upbeat and optimistic approach for changes led her to pursue her passion i.e. Creative writing. She is currently working as Content Writer at Ebizfiling.
Leave a Comment