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Argentina: Double protection for industrial models and designs

As previously explained in our October 2016 briefing, industrial models and designs consist of the shape or ornamental aspect of industrial products.

Decree No 6,673/63 ratified by Law No 16,478 regulates the legal protection of industrial models and designs through the industrial law.

However, under the Argentine Law, it is also possible - in certain cases - to protect the models and designs under Law 11,723 of Intellectual Property (Copyright), which refers to "models and works of art or science applied to commerce or industry", when the drawings or models are substantially covered in their aesthetic aspect. If this creation may still be considered a work even after being dissociated from the product, the custody of the work may be claimed in virtue of the copyright law.

It should be borne in mind that even though double protection is possible under Section 28 of Decree 6,673/63 when a model or industrial design registered according to the above-mentioned decree may have also been registered under Law 11,723, the author may not claim them simultaneously in the judicial defence of his rights.

However, protection under one rule or the other has consequences in the terms: if the work is protected under Decree 6,673/63, the term shall be five years extendible for two periods; but protection based on copyright law remains in effect during the entire life of the author, plus 70 years counted from January 1 of the year following the author's death.

Daniel R Zuccherino

Obligado & Cia
Paraguay 610, 17th Floor
C1057AAH, Buenos Aires, Argentina
Tel: +54 11 4114 1100
Fax: +54 11 4311 5675



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