German 'Geschmacksmuster' is 'Design' (finally)
The Act for modernising the "Geschmacksmuster" and for amending the regulations regarding announcements for the exhibition protection (Bundestag publications 17/13428, 17/14219, 17/14220) went into force on January 1, 2014. It effected two important amendments for Germany.
- The German term "Geschmacksmuster" was changed to "eingetragenes Design" ["registered design" in English]. The "Geschmacksmustergesetz" now is called the "Designgesetz" ["Registered Designs Act"].
- An official invalidation proceedings for registered designs was introduced. Previously, it was only possible to establish the invalidity of a registered design by initiating a legal action before the district courts. The newly formed Design division of the DPMA decides on applications for invalidity. The district courts are competent for this decision only when the defendant refers to the invalidity of the registered design in the infringement suit and suit for damages as part of a counterclaim.
- There are some rumors concerning the German terms for registered community designs and Hague industrial designs as those regulations have not yet been amended.
The German Geschmacksmuster began in 1876. The Registered Design Reform Act only came into force in June 2004 but did not change the term. Up to 2014 it took about 140 years to cancel the bulky term "Geschmacksmuster". The new term "Design" is more European and expands from the feeling that "good taste" ("Geschmack") is an attribute to Design. Taste is a personal feeling. Talking about designs is a more objective evidence of a designed product.
Last updated November 25, 2014