Why should I register my Trade Mark

15 March 2012

A trade mark is a “sign” used in business to distinguish your services or products from others in the marketplace.  It can be a phrase, word, letter, name, logo, colour, symbol, or even a scent or a sound.

Unlike registering a business name (which is mandatory if you are trading as anything other than your personal name), registering a trade mark is optional.  Registration gives the owner the exclusive statutory right to use the mark (or to authorise others to use the mark) in Australia, in respect of the particular goods and/or services for which it has been registered.  In addition, registration provides the following advantages:

  • Automatic legal protection against infringement.  It is much more difficult to protect unregistered trade marks as it will be necessary to prove the reputation of the mark and that its unauthorised use would be misleading or deceptive;
  • It can be used as a defence to any claim of trade mark infringement brought by another trade mark owner; and
  • It is recorded on a public database, which may deter third parties who search the database from adopting the same or a similar sign.

Accordingly, a registered trade mark can be a very important business asset and brand protection strategy.

For more information about registering your trade mark, please contact Darren Sommers at das@meerkinapel.com.au or Amy Millar at am@meerkinapel.com.au