Where can I find information on utility models, copyright, trade marks and designs?

Generally speaking, utility models protect technical innovations which might not qualify for a patent, and can be protected in some countries through registration.

Copyright protects creations such as literary text, musical compositions and works of art, broadcasts and computer software against unauthorised copying and certain other uses.

Trade marks allow brands of products or services to be distinguished. They may be made up of two- or three-dimensional signs such as letters, numbers, words, shapes, logos or pictures, or even sounds.

Designs and models protect the visual appearance of industrial products, i.e. their shape and colour.

You can find information on utility models, trade marks, copyright and designs from the national intellectual property (IP) offices of the EPO's member states.

For information on trade marks and designs in the European Union, contact the European Union Intellectual Property Office (EUIPO) at:

European Union Intellectual Property Office (EUIPO)
(Trade Marks and Designs)
Avenida de Europa, 4
03008 Alicante, Spain

Tel.: +34 (0)96 513-9100
Fax: +34 (0)96 513-1344
Patent offices of member states