Don’t publicise your design

It's hard not to tell others about something you are proud of but you need to keep your design secret if you want to be able to legally protect it.

For your design to be certified and legally enforceable it needs to be determined as ‘new’ and ‘distinctive’.

New and distinctive

In order to be new and distinctive you can’t have published it anywhere in the world or publicly used it in Australia before applying to register it.

New - it must not be identical to any design previously disclosed anywhere in the world. This includes anything published anywhere in the world or publicly used in Australia.

Distinctive - it must not be substantially similar in overall impression to any design previously disclosed anywhere in the world. This also includes anything published anywhere in the world or publicly used in Australia.

It may help your application if you state how the design is new and distinctive but this is not mandatory.

More information

Last updated: 
1 March 2016