Trading name changes from 1 November 2023

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From 1 November 2023, trading names will be phased out in Australia and businesses operating solely with a trading name will no longer be able to use it. Instead, they will need to register a business name.

So, what is the difference between a trading and business name?

Trading names are unregistered names that businesses could operate under prior to 2012, whereas business names, are names that a business operates under and must be registered through the Australian Securities and Investments Commission (ASIC).

What is changing on 1 November 2023?

Previously, you could solely use a trading name when running your business and not register it. It would then be displayed on the Australian Business Register and ABN Lookup. Now things are changing.

If you’re currently still operating under a Trading name, you will need to look at registering this as a business name through ASIC as soon as possible.

If you’d like assistance with the process, get in touch with our Chartered Accountants team.

You will also need to check if someone has already registered your business name if you’ve been operating under a trade name. To check if this is the case, click here.

How do I protect my business name?

Unfortunately, registering a business name does not give you exclusive rights in Australia to use that name. And many business owners can come and change one small element (even just one extra letter) and use a very similar name, unless you protect your Intellectual Property with a trademark.

A business name can hold great value, so we highly recommend all business owners obtain a registered trademark when they register their business name to ensure they have all the legal protections in place and no one else can use it.

Learn more about Intellectual Property and Trademarking here.

You can contact our Aintree Group Legal team for advice on obtaining a registered trademark.