Search Legislation

Intellectual Property Act 2014

Section 1: Unregistered designs: meaning of “design” and “original”.

9.This section amends the definition of unregistered design right.

10.Subsection (1) limits the protection for trivial features of designs, by making sure that protection does not extend to “any aspect” of the shape or configuration of the whole or part of an article. It is expected that this will reduce the tendency to overstate the breadth of unregistered design right and the uncertainty this creates, particularly in relation to actions before the courts.

11.Subsection (3): To be considered “original” an unregistered design should not be “commonplace” in the relevant design field. The meaning of “commonplace” is not set out in the CDPA, and, although case law has helped define it, there remains confusion as to the geographical coverage of the relevant design field. The amendment aims to remove that confusion by specifying that a design must not be “commonplace” in a country mentioned in section 217(3) of the CDPA.

12.Subsection (4) ensures that the new definition of “original” will only apply to designs created after the change in the law and will not be applied retrospectively.

Back to top


Print Options


Explanatory Notes

Text created by the government department responsible for the subject matter of the Act to explain what the Act sets out to achieve and to make the Act accessible to readers who are not legally qualified. Explanatory Notes were introduced in 1999 and accompany all Public Acts except Appropriation, Consolidated Fund, Finance and Consolidation Acts.


More Resources

Access essential accompanying documents and information for this legislation item from this tab. Dependent on the legislation item being viewed this may include:

  • the original print PDF of the as enacted version that was used for the print copy
  • lists of changes made by and/or affecting this legislation item
  • confers power and blanket amendment details
  • all formats of all associated documents
  • correction slips
  • links to related legislation and further information resources

Impact Assessments

Impact Assessments generally accompany all UK Government interventions of a regulatory nature that affect the private sector, civil society organisations and public services. They apply regardless of whether the regulation originates from a domestic or international source and can accompany primary (Acts etc) and secondary legislation (SIs). An Impact Assessment allows those with an interest in the policy area to understand:

  • Why the government is proposing to intervene;
  • The main options the government is considering, and which one is preferred;
  • How and to what extent new policies may impact on them; and,
  • The estimated costs and benefits of proposed measures.