Today, 7th August 2018, a new Design Act (hereinafter referred to as "the Act") was implemented in Israel. This new law replaces the Patents and Designs Ordinance (1924) ("the Ordinance"), which has been the law governing design protection in Israel to date. Whilst the new Act will regulate all matters regarding the registration of designs in Israel moving forward, the old Ordinance will still largely regulate designs which were registered prior to the implementation of the Act.

 

Of particular significance in the new Act are the following provisions:

 

- The term "product" replaces the term "article" in the Ordinance. Article 1 of the Act defines “product” as “including set of articles, packaging, graphic symbol, screen displays…”. Typefaces (fonts) and computer programs are specifically excluded.

 

- Under the old Ordinance, only local novelty of designs was required. Under the new Act, absolute (worldwide) novelty is required. The Act requires a cumulative novelty and individual character, instead of the previously separate requirements of novelty and originality.  Article 3 of the Act provides that a design will be considered to possess a "unique character" when the general impression it creates on an informed user is different from the general impression created by a prior design.

 

- The Act provides that applications for designs made on or after 7th August 2018 will have a term of 25 years, provided that five-yearly renewal fees are paid. Moreover, designs filed under the old Ordinance which are still within their 15-year registration period will be eligible to receive a fourth extension period of 3-years. This extension must be requested during the third 5-year extension period and an associated fee must be paid upon approval of the extension.

 

- A design having novel and individual characteristics may be protected as an unregistered design, for a term of three years. An unregistered design enables the proprietor to prevent others from manufacturing a product which copies the design or creates an overall impression on the informed user that is similar to the overall impression created by the product that is the subject of the design.

 

- The Act provides a grace period within which an applicant can apply for the registration of a new design, within 12 months after it is made public.

 

For any further information or assistance, please do not hesitate to contact us.