- Trademark Registration in Australia is a type of intellectual property protection that acts as a ‘mark of origin’ for products and services, and the businesses that provide these.
- You can trademark your business or company name, logo, brand names, slogans, colours, scents, shapes, images, sounds, aspects of packaging, and even plant names.
- The most successful – and registrable – trademarks are those that are unique and identifiable within the marketplace. Your trademark should be distinctive and should stand out amongst your competition.
- Australian Trademark registration is the only way to protect your mark with exclusive ownership rights. You MUST register your trademark TODAY
Trademark Registration in Australia
Perform a Trademark Search
Before you start thinking about submitting an application for Australian Trademark Registration, you should conduct a thorough search of Australian trademark databases.
Successful trademark registration in Australia depends on the uniqueness and distinguishability of your mark. Any mark that is the same or confusingly similar to another mark registered for the same goods and services will be rejected by the IP Australia examining body. You can save time and money by conducting a trademark search.
We can conduct a professional, comprehensive search on your behalf. Unlike other trademark professionals, we can offer you this service at no cost. We will perform an initial registrability search and a final comprehensive search of both Australian databases and common law sources.
As trademark professionals, we can also analyse the final results of the search and advise you on whether or not your mark is registrable. Should we uncover any conflicting marks in our searches, we can advise you on the steps that you must take in order to make your mark suitable for registration.
File a Trademark Registration with IP Australia
Now that your trademark search is finalised and the registrability of your Trademark Registration in Australia has been determined, you can file an application with IP Australia. Your application requires you to include:
- Your personal details
- A detailed description of your proposed trademark
- A clear image of your proposed trademark, including the proposed colour and typeface
- A nomination of the goods and services associated with your trademark
There are a total of 45 different goods and services classes for you to choose from. The cost of your application will depend on the number of classes you nominate; as will your future use of your trademark. You can only protect your intellectual property in association to the goods and services that you nominate, so choose carefully. We can advise you on the classes you require.
Proceed to the Government Examination
Before you can achieve trademark registration in Australia, your application must undergo an examination by an IP Australia professional. Once your application has been formally filed, IP Australia will issue your official filing details and allocate you with an official trademark number. This number remains throughout the entire lifespan of your mark.
An IP examiner will analyse your application to ensure that it is in compliance with the rules and regulations of Australian trademark law, and to ensure that there are no conflicting marks existing in the region that would prevent registration. The results of your examination generally agree with the results of your trademark search. Once your application has been examined, you will be issued with an acceptance letter or an adverse report.
An acceptance letter signifies that your application has been accepted. Your trademark will be advertised in the Official Journal of Trademarks and your mark will proceed through a three-month opposition period. This period serves to allow other trademark holders to protest your registration on the grounds that it conflicts with their own or other marks.
An adverse report means that your examiner has found issues within your application. You can amend or oppose your adverse report, but you only have a certain amount of time to do so before your application is declared void. We can assist you in amending your application or opposing your adverse report.
The Trademark Registration Process
Now that your mark has been accepted, you are one step closer to achieving Australian trademark registration. Your mark is registered for a period of 10 years from the initial filing date once IP Australia has received your registration fee.
Bear in mind that you must pay your registration fee within a certain amount of time after acceptance. Should you pay your registration fee early and your application is opposed, IP Australia will refund that fee.
Once your final fee is paid, you will receive an Official Certificate of Registration. This certificate allows you to begin using the ® symbol to signify to third parties that you are the owner of a registered trademark. The use of the ® symbol shows consumers that you are an established company with a reputation to protect; and it shows competitors that you are in a strong, defensible position to protect your trademark.
Bear in mind that you cannot use the ® symbol before your official certificate has been issued. To use this symbol without formal registration is a punishable offence.
After Trademark Registration
Once you have finalised your trademark registration in Australia, it lasts for a period of 10 years. You can renew your trademark registration after 10 years, and continue to do so indefinitely, should you wish to maintain the rights to your mark. Should you wish to cease using your mark after 10 years, you need only to let your registration to ‘lapse’. You do not need to apply to cancel or withdraw your registration.
You must ensure that you update IP Australia on any changes to your registration details. These changes might include a change in ownership or your contact details. You will also have to contact IP Australia should you wish to include additional goods and services classes within your registration, as well as pay the required fees.
Ensure that you constantly monitor the marketplace for competitors that introduce new trademarks that are the same or confusingly similar to your own. Should infringement occur, you have the legal right to take action against the offending parties. We can continue to assist you with all of your trademarking needs through registration finalisation and beyond. Contact us at Quick Off the Mark (www.quickoffthemark.com.au) for more information or for any enquiries.
Quick Off the Mark® is a division of Mark My Words Trademark Services Pty Ltd (MMW). MMW was founded in 2011 and is headed by Jacqui Pryor, a registered trade marks attorney with more than 16 years experience.
In 2015 MMW acquired Quick Off the Mark®, which is a fast and affordable Australian trademark registration service. Quick Off the Mark® offers fixed fees that are affordable to help Australian businesses register their trademarks.
Disclaimer – The advice provided in this blog is general advice only. It has been prepared without taking into account your business objectives, legal situation or needs. Before acting on this advice you should consider the appropriateness of the advice, having regard to your own objectives, legal situation and needs.