Hague Agreement Concerning the International Deposit of Industrial Designs

Summary

The Hague Agreement Concerning the International Deposit of Industrial Designs, also known as the Hague system provides a mechanism for registering an industrial design in several countries by means of a single application, filed in one language, with one set of fees. The system is administered by WIPO.

Hague Agreement Concerning the International Deposit of Industrial Designs
  Hague Union State, Party to 1960 Hague Act
  Hague Union State, Parties to 1999 Geneva Act
  covered by Regional Economic Integration Organization (REIO), not separate member
  Hague Union State, also covered by REIO
Signed6 November 1925 (The Hague Agreement)
2 June 1934 (London act)
14 July 1967 (The Hague Act/Stockholm addnl Act)
2 July 1999 (Geneva Act)
LocationThe Hague
Effective1 June 1928
Parties77[1]
DepositarySwitzerland (1925/1934)
Netherlands (1960)
WIPO (1999)

Instruments

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The Hague Agreement consists of several separate treaties,[2] the most important of which are: the Hague Agreement of 1925, the London Act of 2 June 1934,[3] the Hague Act of 28 November 1960 (amended by the Stockholm Act),[4] and the Geneva Act of 2 July 1999.[5]

The original version of the Agreement (the 1925 Hague version) is no longer applied, since all states parties signed up to subsequent instruments. The 1934 London Act formally applied between a London act state that did not sign up to the Hague and/or Geneva Act in relation with other London act states until October 2016. Since 1 January 2010, however, the application of this act had already been frozen.

Countries can become a party to the 1960 (Hague) Act, the 1999 (Geneva) Act, or both. If a country signs up to only one Act, then applicants from that country can only use the Hague system to obtain protection for their designs in other countries which are signed up to the same Act. For instance, because the European Union has only signed up to the 1999 (Geneva) Act, applicants which qualify to use the Hague system because their domicile is in the European Union can only get protection in countries which have also signed up to the 1999 Act or to both the 1999 and 1960 Acts.

Contracting Parties (member countries)

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The Hague System currently has 79 members covering 96 countries. All contracting parties to one or more of the instruments of the Hague Agreement are members of the Hague Union. A list is shown below:

Code[a] Member The Hague 1925 London 1934[b] The Hague 1960 Stockholm 1967 Geneva 1999 territorial scope
OA   OAPI 16 September 2008
AL   Albania 19 March 2007 19 March 2007 19 March 2007
AM   Armenia 13 July 2007
AZ   Azerbaijan 8 December 2010
BR   Brazil 1 August 2023
BY   Belarus 19 July 2021
BX   Belgium 27 July 1929-
1 January 1975
24 November 1939-
1 January 1975
1 August 1984[c] 28 May 1997[c] 18 December 2018[c] Territory also covered by EM
BZ   Belize 12 July 2003 12 July 2003 9 February 2019
BJ   Benin 2 November 1986-
18 October 2016
2 November 1986 2 January 1987 Territory also covered by OA
BA   Bosnia and Herzegovina 24 December 2008
BW   Botswana 5 December 2006
BN   Brunei Darussalam 24 December 2013
CA   Canada 5 November 2018
KH   Cambodia 25 February 2017
CN   China 5 May 2022 excluding Hong Kong and Macao
CI   Cote d'Ivoire 30 May 1993-
18 October 2016
30 May 1993 30 May 1993 Territory also covered by OA
HR   Croatia 12 February 2004 12 February 2004 12 April 2004 Territory also covered by EM
DK   Denmark 9 December 2008 Territory also covered by EM
incl.  Greenland (2011)
  Faroe Islands (2016)
--   East Germany 1949-
3 October 1990
7 May 1989-
3 October 1990
7 May 1989-
3 October 1990
EG   Egypt 1 July 1952-
18 October 2016
27 August 2004
EE   Estonia 23 December 2012 Territory also covered by EM
EM   European Union 1 January 2008
FI   Finland 1 May 2011 Territory also covered by EM
FR   France 20 October 1930 25 June 1939-
18 October 2016
1 August 1984 27 September 1975 18 March 2007 Territory also covered by EM
Including all territories
GA   Gabon 18 August 2003 18 August 2003 Territory also covered by OA
DE   Germany 1 June 1928 13 June 1939-
18 October 2016
1 August 1984 27 September 1975 13 February 2010 Territory also covered by EM
Stockholm and Hague act: Including "Land Berlin
GE   Georgia 1 August 2003 1 August 2003 23 December 2003
GH   Ghana 16 September 2008
GR   Greece 18 April 1997 18 April 1997 13 February 2024 Territory also covered by EM
HU   Hungary 7 April 1984-
1 February 2005
1 August 1984 7 April 1984 1 May 2004 Territory also covered by EM
IS   Iceland 23 December 2003
ID   Indonesia 27 December 1949-
3 June 2010
IL   Israel 3 January 2020
IT   Italy 13 June 1997 13 August 1987 14 March 2024 Territory also covered by EM
JM   Jamaica 10 February 2022
JP   Japan 13 May 2015
KG   Kyrgyzstan 17 March 2003 17 March 2003 23 December 2003
LV   Latvia 26 July 2005 Territory also covered by EM
LI   Liechtenstein 14 July 1933 28 January 1951-
18 October 2016
1 August 1984 27 September 1975 23 December 2003
LT   Lithuania 26 September 2008 Territory also covered by EM
BX   Luxembourg 1 August 1984[c] 28 May 1979[c] 18 December 2018[c] Territory also covered by EM
MK   North Macedonia 18 March 1997 18 March 1997 22 March 2006
ML   Mali 7 September 2006 7 September 2006 Territory also covered by OA
MU   Mauritius 6 May 2023
MX   Mexico 6 June 2020
MD   Moldova 14 March 1994 14 March 1994 23 December 2003
MC   Monaco 29 April 1956-
18 October 2016
1 August 1984 27 September 1975 9 June 2011
MN   Mongolia 12 April 1997 12 April 1997 19 January 2008
ME   Montenegro 3 June 2006 3 June 2006 5 March 2012 succession from Serbia and Montenegro
MA   Morocco 20 October 1930 21 January 1941-
18 October 2016
13 October 1999 12 October 1999
NA   Namibia 13 June 2004
BX   Netherlands 1 June 1928-
1 January 1975
5 August 1948-
1 January 1975
1 August 1984[c] 28 June 1979[c] 18 December 2018[c] Territory also covered by EM
London Act incl Dutch East Indies (-1950), Suriname (-1975), Netherlands Antilles (-2010), Aruba (1986-2011), Curaçao, Sint Maarten and Caribbean Netherlands (2010-2011)
NE   Niger 20 September 2004 20 September 2004 Territory also covered by OA
KP   North Korea 27 May 1992 27 May 1992 13 September 2016
NO   Norway 17 June 2010
OM   Oman 4 March 2009
PL   Poland 2 July 2009 Territory also covered by EM
RU   Russia 28 February 2018
RO   Romania 18 July 1992 18 July 1992 23 December 2003 Territory also covered by EM
RW   Rwanda 31 August 2011
WS   Samoa 2 January 2020
SM   San Marino 26 January 2019
ST   Sao Tome and Principe 8 December 2008
SN   Senegal 30 June 1984-
18 October 2016
1 August 1984 30 June 1984 Territory also covered by OA
RS   Serbia 30 December 1993 30 December 1993 9 December 2009
SG   Singapore 17 December 2005
SI   Slovenia 13 January 1995 13 January 1995 23 December 2003 Territory also covered by EM
KR   South Korea 1 July 2014
ES   Spain 1 June 1928 2 March 1956-
18 October 2016
23 December 2003 Territory also covered by EM
Hague agreement and London Act: Including Spanish Morocco (-1956) and Colonies (1947-1975)
SR   Suriname 25 November 1975-
18 October 2016
1 August 1984 23 February 1977
CH    Switzerland 1 June 1928 24 November 1939-
19 November 2010
1 August 1984 27 September 1975 23 December 2003
SY   Syria 7 May 2008
TJ   Tajikistan 21 March 2012
--   Tangier 6 March 1936-
1956
13 June 1939-
1956
now part of Morocco
TN   Tunisia 20 October 1930 4 October 1942-
18 October 2016
13 June 2012
TR   Turkey 1 January 2005
TM   Turkmenistan 16 March 2016
UA   Ukraine 28 August 2002 28 August 2002 23 December 2003
UK   United Kingdom 13 June 2018 Territory until 2021 also covered by EM. Incl. Isle of Man (2018-) and Guernsey (2021-)
US   United States 13 May 2015
VA   Vatican 29 June 1960-
4 August 2007
VN   Vietnam 30 December 2019
Notes
  1. ^ Code used in the context of the Hague Agreement
  2. ^ Application was suspended since 2013
  3. ^ a b c d e f g h i The Benelux countries form a single territory for application of this act

A list of the Contracting Parties is maintained by WIPO.

Use of the system

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Germany, Switzerland and the Republic of Korea were the three largest users of the Hague System in 2017

Qualification to use the Hague system

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Applicants can qualify to use the Hague system on the basis of any of the following criteria:

  • the applicant is a national of a Contracting Party (i.e. member country)
  • the applicant is domiciled in a Contracting Party
  • the applicant has a real and effective industrial or commercial establishment in a Contracting Party
  • the applicant has their habitual residence in a Contracting Party (only available if the Contracting Party in question has adhered to the 1999 (Geneva) Act)

An applicant who does not qualify under one of these headings cannot use the Hague system. The Contracting Parties include not only individual countries, but also intergovernmental organisations such as the African Intellectual Property Organization (OAPI) and the European Union. This means an applicant domiciled in an EU member country that is not a Contracting Party, such as Austria or the United Kingdom, can nevertheless use the Hague system on the basis of his or her domicile in the European Union.

Application requirements

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An application may be filed in English, French, or Spanish, at the choice of the applicant. The application must contain one or more views of the designs concerned and can include up to 100 different designs provided that the designs are all in the same class of the International Classification of Industrial Designs (Locarno Classification).

The application fee is composed of three types of fees: a basic fee, a publication fee, and a designation fee for each designated Contracting Party.

Examination and registration procedure

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The application is examined for formal requirements by the International Bureau of WIPO, which provides the applicant with the opportunity to correct certain irregularities in the application. Once the formal requirements have been met, it is recorded in the International Register and details are published electronically in the International Designs Bulletin on the WIPO website.

If any designated Contracting Party considers that a design which has been registered for protection in that Contracting Party does not meet its domestic criteria for registrability (e.g. it finds that the design is not novel), it must notify the International Bureau that it refuses the registration for that Contracting Party. In every Contracting Party that does not issue such a refusal, the international registration takes effect and provides the same protection as if the design(s) had been registered under the domestic law of that Contracting Party.

Publication

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Standard publication of Hague applications is 12 months after filing. The applicant, however, can request either immediate publication, or delayed publication of up to 30 months. [6]

Duration & renewal

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The duration of an international registration is five years, extendable in further five-year periods up to the maximum duration permitted by each Contracting Party. For the 1934 London Act the maximum term was 15 years.

Renewals are handled centrally by the International Bureau. The applicant pays a renewal fee and notifies the International Bureau of the countries for which the registration is to be renewed.

Naming

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The agreement was concluded at the Dutch city The Hague.

References

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  1. ^ Party to any of the treaties
  2. ^ Full texts of the Hague Agreement, Regulations and Administrative Instructions. WIPO
  3. ^ London Act of the Hague Agreement Archived 8 October 2009 at the Wayback Machine. WIPO
  4. ^ Hague Act of the Hague Agreement Archived 21 November 2009 at the Wayback Machine. WIPO
  5. ^ Geneva Act of the Hague Agreement Archived 16 August 2009 at the Wayback Machine. WIPO
  6. ^ Ludwig, Mary (26 January 2024). "Strategies for Using the Hague System". IPWatchdog.
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  • World Intellectual Property Organization (WIPO) information on the Hague Agreement
  • List of the Contracting Parties (in English) in the WIPO Lex database — official website of WIPO.