New Nation­al Busi­ness Names Reg­is­ter — Do I need to do anything?

A New System

A new nation­al busi­ness names reg­is­tra­tion ser­vice com­menced on 28 May 2012. The new ser­vice replaces the pre­vi­ous State and Ter­ri­to­ry sys­tems and is admin­is­tered and man­aged by the Aus­tralian Secu­ri­ties Invest­ments Com­mis­sion. The nation­al sys­tem is designed to reduce red tape, save time and cut costs for Aus­tralian busi­ness­es, who can now reg­is­ter and renew their busi­ness names at a sin­gle loca­tion for an annu­al fee of $30 or $70 for three years.

What does this mean for your business?
Assum­ing your exist­ing busi­ness names were not due for renew­al on or before 28 May 2012 you are not required to do any­thing. Your State and Ter­ri­to­ry busi­ness names were auto­mat­i­cal­ly trans­ferred to the nation­al reg­is­ter on 28 May.

If your busi­ness name was due for renew­al before 28 May and you have not yet renewed the name, then you must first renew your busi­ness name with the Depart­ment of Fair Trad­ing and pay any out­stand­ing fees in the rel­e­vant State BEFORE your busi­ness name will trans­fer to the nation­al reg­is­ter.

Was your busi­ness name reg­is­tered in mul­ti­ple juris­dic­tions before com­mence­ment of the new nation­al system?
If so, all of your iden­ti­cal busi­ness names were trans­ferred to, and would now appear on, the nation­al busi­ness names register.

You may choose to renew one busi­ness name and let the oth­ers expire by not renew­ing them, or alter­na­tive­ly you can speed up this process by can­celling the busi­ness names that you no longer require. Can­celling the dupli­cate busi­ness names will not incur a fee.

What hap­pens if your busi­ness name was reg­is­tered by anoth­er busi­ness in a dif­fer­ent juris­dic­tion before com­mence­ment of the new nation­al register?
In this sit­u­a­tion iden­ti­cal busi­ness names will all trans­fer to the nation­al busi­ness names reg­is­ter. An addi­tion­al iden­ti­fi­er (such as the word ´New South Wales´) will appear on the reg­is­ter to assist in dif­fer­en­ti­at­ing between iden­ti­cal busi­ness names in dif­fer­ent States. This addi­tion­al iden­ti­fi­er does not form part of the busi­ness name, mean­ing you can con­tin­ue to trade using your exist­ing busi­ness name.

Sim­ply reg­is­ter­ing your busi­ness name does not give you a pro­pri­etary inter­est in the name. To enjoy pro­pri­etary rights you should ensure your busi­ness name is reg­is­tered as a trade mark in respect of the goods and ser­vices for which it is used.

If you would like us to help you pro­tect your busi­ness name please contact: