The Trade Marks and Designs Registration Office of the European Union
Please consult “Practical Aspects” within the Community Design part of the website and more precisely:
Do I need to be represented to file an RCD application?
4.2 Who is entitled to represent a third party before the OHIM?
4.3 I am applying from outside the EU. Can a relative or friend established inside the EU act as my representative?
4.4 Can trade mark attorneys or legal practitioners also act as design attorneys?
Can I file now and designate a representative at a later stage?
4.1. Do I need to be represented to file an RCD application?
For a design application applied for by a natural or legal person not having either their domicile or their principal place of business or a real and effective industrial or commercial establishment in the EU, the applicant does not need to be represented to send an application for registration to the OHIM. However, representation will be required at a later stage.
For a design application applied for by a natural or legal person having its domicile or its principal place of business or a real and effective industrial or commercial establishment in the EU, the applicant does not need to be represented either to file the application, or to manage the RCD file.
Although any company or natural person established within the EU in practice does not need to be represented, professional representatives file in about 91% of the cases, as they are experienced in the relevant legislation.
Only people entitled to represent before the OHIM as detailed in the answer above may do so.
Authorisations are not required except if the representative is an employee. The applicant must, however, identify the representative on the form, if one has been appointed.
Yes, you can pay them yourself.
If you need to be represented before the OHIM, you can file your application for registration without being represented. In this case, you should pay the fees directly to the OHIM. But you will need an appointed representative later during the examination phase.
Therefore, you may consider it easier to appoint the representative to file the application as well as to pay the corresponding fees.
Within the agents database called FINDREP, you can find agents sorted according to different criteria.
Strictly speaking, if you need to be represented before the OHIM, you can file your application for registration without being represented before the OHIM. But you will need a representative at the examination stage. As the whole process of registering a design is fast and straightforward, you are encouraged to designate your representative at the application stage. It will avoid the Designs Department needing to issue a deficiency letter and at the same time, it will allow the registration to be quasi-instantaneous if there is no other deficiency in your application. The registration time for your design will be shorter if you designate a representative at the very beginning of proceedings.