Dessins et modèles industriels
Since it is not clearly stipulated in the laws and regulations of Italy concerning industrial designs that textile designs are protected in conformity with the TRIPS Agreement, please explain under which provision of the laws and regulations or other copyright related law these designs are protected. Moreover, to make sure that the opportunity to seek and obtain protection for textile designs is not impaired unreasonably, please explain your system or practice particularly with regard to cost, examination or publication (cf. paragraph 2 of Article 25 of the TRIPS Agreement).
Textile designs are protected by patents in Italy, according to Royal Decrees No. 1127 of 29 June 1939 and No. 1411 of 25 August 1940, as modified by Legislative Decree No. 198 of 19 March 1996. For the purposes of registration, designs or models must be both new and original. Novelty must be assessed by taking account of pre-existing designs and models. Originality must consist in a specific ornament. It is therefore necessary that such designs or models are the expression of a new aesthetic concept. As to the main procedures for registration of designs and models, it should be stressed that under the Italian law up to 100 designs may be deposited by a single application; a graphic representation of the design or model is to be submitted along with the deposit, and a two-dimensional specimen of the design or model may also be provided. No provision applies to publication of the graphic representation, and therefore to the possibility to defer such publication, whereas deposit under sealed cover is not allowed. No examination procedure is laid down, nor are third party proceedings permitted in respect of registration. The owner of a design or model has the exclusive right to put the design or model into practice; to make use of and trade in the products embodying such design or model; designs or models are protected for a term of 15 years from the time of deposit. The following rights and legal actions are also available to the owner of a patent on a design or model: actions for infringement against unlawful utilization of the design or model and/or actions for determination of patent validity; presumption of validity of the design or model, since the burden of proof is on the person claiming invalidity or forfeiture of the design or model; right to obtain information from the alleged infringer on the production and/or marketing network; right to obtain description and sequestration of the allegedly infringing products and/or the implements used to produce them; right to obtain a judicial decision, whether final or as a precautionary measure, prohibiting manufacture, sale and use of any goods which represent an infringement of the design or model; right to claim damages for the injury suffered on account of the infringement. The aforementioned remedies are without prejudice to the criminal penalties imposed on the infringer. Registration is simple and inexpensive in Italy, there being no compulsory examination as to novelty and originality and no publication requirements; furthermore, payment of the protection tax may be made for textile designs on a yearly basis (Article 12 of Royal Decree No. 1411 of 25 August 1940, modified by Article 11 of Legislative Decree No. 198 of 19 March 1996).