Using and maintaining your trade mark

Once you have registered 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 trade mark if and when it is required.

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

  • Displaying the ® (R) symbol next to your trade mark whenever it is used (it is illegal to do this 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.
  • You need to ensure your trade mark continues to be regarded as a trade mark. If your trade mark becomes known as the generic name for your goods or services a third party could have it cancelled through the courts.
  • You need to use your trade mark or risk losing it. If a registered trade mark is unused for three years it can be removed from the register. This will mean you could lose your right to that trade mark.
  • Beware of unofficial registers or services. For more information see unsolicited IP invoices
Last updated: 
18 March 2016