Last updated: 
21 July 2020

Once you have applied for your trade mark you will be able to look it up in Australian trade mark search.

It is your responsibility to make sure your trade mark is kept current by paying the appropriate renewal fees and making changes to your registration details if and when it is required.

There are a number of things to consider when it comes to using and maintaining your trade mark:

  • Once your trade mark is registered, you can display the ® (R) symbol next to it whenever it is used. This symbol is different to the ™ (TM) symbol, which can be used for any trade mark, even if it has not been registered. It is illegal to use the ® (R) symbol if you have not registered your trade mark.
  • Keeping your address details up to date so we can notify you when it is time to renew your trade mark (usually every 10 years).
  • Commercialising your trade mark – there are four main ways you can commercialise your intellectual property (IP): assignment, licensing, franchising and spin offs.
  • Monitoring the market to keep on top of new and existing trade marks being used in your industry.
  • Being opposition savvy - you are entitled to oppose the acceptance of another trade mark you think infringes upon yours.
  • If your trade mark becomes known as the generic name for your goods or services a third party could have your registration cancelled through the courts.
  • You need to use your trade mark or risk losing it. If a registered trade mark is unused it can be removed from the register. This will mean you could lose your right to that trade mark. The earliest a non-use application can be made is five years after the filing date of the registered trade mark, and it must be demonstrated that the trade mark has not been used in the past three years. Read more about applying for removal for non use and how to oppose removal for non use.
  • Beware of unofficial registers or services. For more information see unsolicited IP invoices