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When it comes to entrepreneurship, you must bear in mind that, in an increasingly competitive environment, you have to make a creative effort to differentiate yourself in the market. Therefore, industrial property is definitely relevant for you.

What is industrial property?

It is a set of rights that a natural or legal person may possess over a distinctive sign, an invention, an industrial design, etc.

In Spain, there are several types of industrial property right:

  • Trademarks and Trade Names (Distinctive Signs): these protect the combination of graphic and/or denominative elements that help distinguish products and services on the market from other similar ones offered by other economic agents. More information.
  • Patents and utility models: these protect inventions consisting of products and procedures which are susceptible to reproduction and/or use for industrial purposes Learn more.
  • Topographies of semiconductors: these protect the (diagram of) pathways of the different layers and elements making up an integrated circuit, their three-dimensional arrangement and their interconnections, that is, what constitutes its "topography". Learn more.
  • Industrial Designs: these protect the external appearance of products Learn more.

 

How much do industrial property rights cost?

  • They strengthen your market position in relation to competitors.
  • Registration helps prevent others from taking advantage of your creation or invention by allowing you to take legal action against those who infringe your rights.
  • You have the right to sell or license your industrial property rights, as they are an intangible asset.

Industrial property rights are only granted by registering them at , and to do so you must file an application  at the Spanish Patent and Trademark Office.

An industrial design protects the appearance or ornamentation of a product or part of a product, which makes it visually different from another product, without taking into account its technical or functional characteristics.

The definition of product is very broad and covers both industrial and artisan products.

As a general rule, an industrial design can consist of:

  • three-dimensional objects, e.g. furniture, shoes, two-dimensional elements, i.e. ornamentations
  • a combination of the above
  • - three dimensional objects, e.g. furniture, shoes, two dimensional elements, such as ornamentations, - a combination of the above - as well as what we might traditionally consider to be design. It is also possible to protect architectural structures, a stage set, the layout of the interior of a shop, a shop window, a book or magazine cover, a web page or typography.

You only have the right to the industrial design if you register it and to do so, you must file an application with the Spanish Patent and Trademark Office.

Note:

An industrial design right protects only the appearance or aesthetic characteristics of a product, whereas a patent protects an invention that provides a new technical solution to a problem. In principle, an industrial design right does not protect the technical or functional characteristics of a product, which could, however, be protected by a patent.

 

What benefits do I get if I protect an industrial design?

I want to file an industrial design application

Search for a design

How much does it cost?

I need help

Pursuant to article 4 of Law 24/2015 of 24 July on Patents, a computer program that is claimed "as such" is not a patentable invention.

 

The source code or object code of a computer program is protected by copyrightin the Intellectual Property Register.

  

However, if you have a computer-implemented invention, i.e. one that requires the use of a computer, computer network or other programmable device for its implementation, where one or more features are realised wholly or partly by means of a computer program, you may be able to protect it by patent.

 

Brochure on computer-implemented inventions

Industrial property rights are territorial, i.e. if you apply for a trademark, patent or industrial design at the Spanish Patent and Trademark Office, you will only have the exclusive right to use it in Spain. Consequently, products protected in Spain cannot be exported with a guarantee to other countries if they have not been registered in those countries.

 

How can I grow my business in other countries?

 

I want to register my  trademark in other countries

 

I want to apply for and validate a European patent to protect my invention in other European countries

 

I want to file an international PCT application to protect my invention in other countries

 

I want to register my industrial design in other countries

 

A trademark is a distinctive sign that serves to distinguish the goods or services of one undertaking from those of others.

 

A trade name does not represent a product or service and instead serves to identify the trade activity undertaken by a company and to differentiate it from all other companies in both the same and different sectors.

 

They should not be confused with domain names or company names, which fulfil other functions and are not registered at the Spanish Patent and Trademark Office.

 

You only have the right to the trademark or trade name if you register it; to do so, you must file an application with the Spanish Patent and Trademark Office.

 

What are the benefits of protecting a trademark or trade name?

I want to file an application for a trademark or trade name

Search trademarks and trade names

How much does it cost?

I need help

You can protect your invention by patent or utility model.

 

A patent lasts for 20 years and protects an invention that is a device, a product or a process.

 

A utility model has a duration of 10 years and protects an invention that is a device or a product.

 

If you have a patent or utility model, you can prevent anyone else from copying, selling or importing your invention without your consent.

 

You are only entitled to a patent or utility model if you register it; to do so, you must file an application with the Spanish Patent and Trademark Office.

 

What benefits do I get if I protect an invention?

I would like to apply for a patent or utility model

Search for a patent

How much does it cost?

I need help

Pursuant to article 4 of Law 24/2015, of 24 March, on Patents,

the following shall not be considered inventions:

  1. Discoveries, scientific theories and mathematical methods.
  2. Literary or artistic works or any other aesthetic creation, and scientific works.
  3. Plans, rules and methods for carrying out intellectual activities, for games or for economic and commercial activities, and computer program.
  4. Ways of presenting information.

 

Ideas, games, photos, illustrations, videos, musical creations, and literary and scientific works can be protected by intellectual property, such as copyright.

 

In Spain, there are different laws for industrial property and intellectual property and the bodies in charge of their management also differ. Industrial property rights are registered at the Spanish Patent and Trademark Office, and intellectual property rights are registered at the Intellectual Property Registry.

The Spanish Patent and Trademark Office (SPTO) is not competent to file lawsuits or prosecute alleged offenders ex officio.

If you believe that your industrial property rights have been infringed and you want to file a lawsuit in the appropriate court, we recommend that you consult a specialist lawyer, both in your country and in neighbouring countries. We recommend that you contact the Official Association of Industrial Property Agents (COAPI) for more information. 

 

Recommendations in case of infringement

 

In addition, before taking legal action, you can request mediation or arbitration. The SPTO and the World Intellectual Property Organization (WIPO) are working together to promote Alternative Dispute Resolution Métodos in Industrial Property matters  through the WIPO Arbitration and Mediation Center.

About SPTO

We are the only official body for registering patents, trademarks and designs in Spain.

 

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An autonomous body attached to the Ministry of Industry

and Tourism, which promotes research, development and technology transfer.

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Courses and training material on industrial property: patents/utility models, trademarks/trade names and industrial designs.

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Spanish Official Industrial Property Gazette

 

Official communication channel for administrative acts (applications, notifications and resolutions) relating to industrial property.

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