Design protection Designs are two-dimensional representations, while models are three-dimensional objects or representations. An industrial design or model can be applied to the appearance of a whole product or to a part of a product. It can consist of two-dimensional features such as the motifs, contours or colours of the product as well as of three-dimensional elements such as the product's shape or texture. It is possible to register essentially any feature as an industrial design or model as long as it is purely related to the product's visual appearance and not dictated by its operation or the fact that it fits into another component of a more complex product. The maximum period of design or model protection is 25 years in the Member States of the European Union, with an initial 5-year duration, and the added option to renew it up to 4 times. This protection does not cover: purely decorative objects with no utilitarian function; ideas, as these are intangible. The applicant is deemed to own the right to the design or model, which he or she is not obliged to market. Obtaining design protection There are two types of registration: a single registration applicable to a single design or model a multiple registration in the case of several designs or models intended to be applied to objects belonging to the same class under the international classification of industrial designs and models. Registration of the design or model with the Benelux Office for Intellectual Property grants the exclusive right to the design or model in all the Benelux countries. Beyond Benelux, it is possible to obtain uniform protection in the Member States of the European Union, through the European Union Intellectual Property Office by filing an application for a registered Community design or model. Protection is also offered by the non-registered Community design or model right, which is acquired following the disclosure of the design or model within the European Union. It is limited to 3 years and grants protection against the servile copy of the design. If the applicant's market is outside the European Union, there is a procedure in place in order to allow for the application of an international industrial design registration (The Hague System). International registration is administered by the World Intellectual Property Organisation.