Industrial design law, case VI SA/Wa 1744/11

July 13th, 2012, Tomasz Rychlicki

The Voivodeship Administrative Court in its judgment of 16 February 2012 case file VI SA/Wa 1744/11 ruled that the term “public order” and “morality”, as defined in the provisions of Article 106(1) of the Polish Act of 30 June 2000 on Industrial Property Law – IPL – (in Polish: ustawa Prawo własności przemysłowej), published in Journal of Laws (Dziennik Ustaw) of 2001 No 49, item 508, consolidated text of 13 June 2003, Journal of Laws (Dziennik Ustaw) No 119, item 1117, with subsequent amendments, are not unequivocal.

Article 106
1. Rights in registration shall not be granted for industrial designs whose exploitation would be contrary to public order or morality; exploitation of an industrial design shall not be considered to be contrary to public order merely because it is prohibited by law.

The Court ruled that it is assumed that the inadmissibility of the design that is contrary to “morality” is primarily aimed at preventing the circulation of designs that violate social moral order. From this point of view, a design (product incorporating the design) and its circulation on the market should be examined with regard to the collision with generally accepted moral principles. While “public order” is defined by the basic social and legal principles, in particular legal principles arising from the Constitution.


This case concerned the industrial design “Zeszyt edukacyjny” (in English: educational exercise book) Rp-10113. See also “Polish regulations on industrial designs” and “Polish case law on industrial designs“.