Adverse examination report

When you apply for a trade mark, if the application is not in order for acceptance you will receive an adverse examination report. The report will outline the grounds for rejection and may provide options in overcoming them.

What should you do if you receive an adverse report?

You can respond to us and if you do not respond, your application will lapse.


You can call us to discuss your report or seek more information.

If you want to progress the application toward acceptance and include lengthy or complex arguments, you will need to put it in writing so that we can consider it fully.

You might also disagree with what we have said. If this is the case you can submit your response or argument in writing.

Supporting information/evidence

If our examination team has raised an objection to your trade mark, there are some strategies that you might be able to use to overcome that objection. For example, you could compile and submit evidence of use of your trade mark.

Time frames

You have 15 months from the date of the report to get your application accepted.

This means that you have 15 months to respond and have our examination team to consider your response. This could result in acceptance of the application or if matters remain outstanding, another adverse report. It is in your interests to submit any response as early as possible to allow enough time to address any deficiencies.

If your application lapses for failing to respond to the report in the 15 month period, you can apply for an extension of time under section 224 of the Trade Marks Act 1995 to have your application reinstated. Fees are applicable.

Last Updated: 28/11/2014

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