Any natural or legal person can file a design application. The application must specify the person(s) entitled to be the owner(s) of the design registration. The person(s) entitled to be the owner of the design can be:

  • the creator of the design (the person who conceived the design)
  • the employer of the creator, if the creator made the design in the course of their employment
  • the person who contracted the creator to make the design
  • the person to whom the creator has assigned the design in writing.

Where two or more people own interests in a design, they must apply jointly. The owner may be an individual, a company, a trust, an association or a partnership.

Register as a Customer

To view information on how to register as a customer, click here.  If you are already registered as a customer, and know your customer code and password, proceed to step 2.

Deposit funds

Deposit the application fee of R240 for each design application that you wish lodge with CIPC into the CIPC bank account using your customer code as reference. For the bank account details, click here.

The proof of payment must reach us on or before the date that you apply.

Please note that you have to file a separate design application for each class of the Locarno Classification for which you would like to use your design. For example, if your design is to be applied on an article of clothing, your Locarno Class will be 2. If your design is also applicable to food stuff, then you will have to file a separate application in Class 1.

You can apply for an aesthetic or a functional design or both. The aesthetic design will be recorded in  part A of the Design Register, and the functional design will be recorded in  part F of the Design Register.  If you wish to have both aesthetic and functional design, you have to file separate applications and pay the registration fee for each of the applications.

Conduct a Search

Although it is not compulsory to conduct a search to check the originality of the design or that the same or similar design is not registered – it is advisable to do so, before filing for registration. A search can be conducted at the Design Registry Office in Pretoria. It could be done personally or by a patent attorney.

The SA Designs Register and Cardex Catalogue are available currently only on paper form at our Paper Disclosure Unit situated in 202 Essellen, Sunnyside, Pretoria, 2nd Floor.

Registration of a Design

When the design application has been received and logged, the applicant is sent: 

1 copy of form D1 indicating acknowledgement and the official design application number.

Following a period of 6 months formal examination (compliance with the formal requirements) is conducted and usually in month 7 (if the compliance with all the formal requirements is established):

  • A notice of registration (acceptance) is sent by CIPC to the applicant
  • The applicant has a duty to advertise the notice of registration in the Patent Journal by submitting this notice to CIPC for publication in the prescribed manner (see CIPC Website)
  • A registration certificate is issued.

To keep the design in force, renewal fees must be paid starting from the third year after the lodgement or on the date of granting


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Service turnaround time: Allocate an official application number to new design applications:  5 working days from the of receipt of the application/s.

Issue design registration certificate: 44 working days (2 months) from the date of publication of the Notice of Acceptance.


Apply for your design

Once you have confirmed that your design is new and distinctive, you need to apply for your design with us.
The design needs to be represented clearly through either a drawing or photograph.

For electronic filing of design applications, please go to IP E-Services / E-filing Sign-in.

icons-print.pngApplication and Acknowledgment

  • Complete form D1 -Application and Acknowledgment
    • It should be lodged (in duplicate for manual filing only)
    • Enter the classification index (class number) in terms of the Design Classification (Locarno Classification available on the WIPO website). In case you experience difficulties in defining the classification index , you may apply to the Registrar of Design to do so upon payment of the prescribed fee (R240.00)

Please note that you have to write your CIPC customer code on form D1.

  • Form D2 : Register of Designs

    • Complete and lodge (in duplicate for manual filing only)
  • Form D3: Power of Attorney
  • Form D6: Definitive Statement (compulsory) and Explanatory Statement (optional except for integrated circuits layout, mask work or series of mask works where the Explanatary Statement is compulsory)

    • Lodge in duplicate (applicable only for manual filing)
    • The definitive statement should be a description of the features of the design for which protection is sought (e.g. shape, pattern, ornamentation, configuration, as applicable)
  • Form D8: Publication Particulars

    • Lodge in duplicate (applicable only for manual filing)

    • The "brief statement of features" shall be a single paragraph of not more than 100 words. Essentially this is a combination of the definitive and explanatory statement (as per D6 )

Together with the documentation listed above, "Representations" in the form of drawings, or photographs need to be included.

These could be: 7 identical representations (only 1 representation is required for e-filing), either drawings or photographs. Each drawing should be on an A4 paper, or each photograph mounted on A4 paper.

  • Enclose different perspectives (as applicable) e.g. top view, side view, front view, 7 of each are required.
  • Select one view for publication and provide 2 copies clearly indicating "for publication".
  • All drawings / photographs except those designated for publication should be signed.

Important:  Please note that multiple copies are not applicable to e-filing.

Submit the design application and supporting documents by either posting the applications or dropping off the application in the drop-off box at the CIPC Self Help Terminals at the Sunnypark Shopping Centre.

Click here to lodge an enquiry

icons-enquire.pngImportant: Queries relating to  transactions already lodged should only be submitted once the Service Turnaround Time has lapsed.