Pre-application service (TM Headstart)

TM Headstart is our pre-application service. It's perfect if you've never applied for a trade mark before, and want an examiner to review your application for common errors.

At a glance

  • Tailored for first-time filers
  • Edit
    Feedback (and a chance to fix errors) before you apply
  • File
    Quick turnaround service
  • Cost
    Costs $330 (min)

What is TM Headstart?

Our pre-application service, TM Headstart, is an application method for first-time trade mark applicants.

When you apply with TM Headstart, an examiner will assess your trade mark before you formally apply. You'll get feedback and an opportunity to amend your application, increasing your chances of getting a registered trade mark.

Which trade marks can be assessed?

You can use TM Headstart for common trade mark types, including:

  • Words or phrases (e.g. Mitre 10's 'Mighty helpful')
  • Words or phrases in a specific font style (e.g. 'Ford' in cursive font)
  • Logos (e.g. Nike swoosh).

For other trade marks and special registration types, use the standard trade mark application service.

Read about different kinds of trade marks

How it works

There are three steps to applying with TM Headstart. Each step has a separate fee, so you can avoid unnecessary costs. As this is a fast turnaround service, strict timeframes apply. If you miss a deadline, your application will lapse.

  • Upload

    1. Submit your TM Headstart request

    Create an online services account and 'Apply with TM Headstart' to submit your trade mark for assessment.

    Within five business days, an examiner will send an assessment report to your online services inbox.

    To avoid missing deadlines, frequently check your online services inbox.

  • Edit

    2. Amend your application (optional)

    Due date: Five business days from receiving examiner's report (before 11:59pm AEST).

    You may choose to make changes to your application based on your examiner's report. Once you submit them through online services, your examiner will re-assess your application and send you a new report. Most amendments will attract a fee.

  • Tick

    3. Formalise your application (optional)

    Due date: Five business days from receiving examiner's report (before 11:59pm AEST).

    If you decide you want to move forward and apply for a trade mark, you'll need to convert it into a formal application. This step attracts an additional fee. Once your trade mark is formally filed, you can only make minor changes. If your application is successful, your trade mark is effective from this filing date.

Min. total cost: $330 (includes Step 1 fee + Step 3 fee for an application with one class of goods or services).

TM Headstart costs more than a standard application, but could save you money in the long run, as applications filed with mistakes aren't refundable.

Action  Fees (per class) 
Step 1 - TM Headstart request

Step 2 - Amend your application (optional)

  • Change of trade mark representation
  • Addition of new classes




Step 3 - Conversion to a standard application (Part 2 fee)


It's important to note:

  • Total cost will depend on how many classes of goods and services you have, and whether you make changes to your application
  • You won't receive invoices for TM Headstart fees. Submit and pay for each step through online services, adhering to the deadlines stated in your examination report(s)
  • We can't offer refunds for any TM Headstart fees.
Timeframes and fees

While your TM Headstart examiner will help you identify potential barriers to registration, they can't:

  • Check if your trade mark infringes on an existing registration
  • Provide legal advice or recommend a specific course of action
  • Submit any part of the application for you
  • Guarantee your application's success.

If you need this kind of advice, speak to a registered trade mark attorney, or IP professional.

Find professional help