Starting a business can be a daunting, yet exciting, experience. For many new business owners, finding the right business name is one of the most important components of the business brand. Many hours can go into ensuring the name is ‘just right’ for your product or service.
Once a business name is determined, the name is usually registered with ASIC and the business owner will proceed with creating logos, website and various promotional material.
Often, the last thing on their mind is whether:
- the name breaches the intellectual property rights of another business;
- the name should be registered as a trade mark; or
- the name is registerable as a trade mark.
Many new business owners will often (wrongly) assume that because they have registered their business name with ASIC, they automatically own the intellectual property in that name.
Problems arise when:
- you unwittingly use a business name that infringes the rights of a registered trade mark owner;
- another business owner starts using the same or substantially similar business name at yours; and/or
- you attempt to register your trade mark; however, it is rejected on the basis that it fails to meet the legal criteria for a registered trade mark.
Unfortunately, should any of the above instances occur, a business owner could either find themselves involved in an expensive legal battle and/or a costly rebranding exercise.
Accordingly, we strongly recommend you seek legal advice on registering your business name as a trade mark during the early days of your business development. If you have already been operating your business for some time, it may be time to call our office to discuss your options.
For advice and assistance on registering a trade mark, please contact our office on (07) 3161 2847 or firstname.lastname@example.org