Your brand is a treasured asset, and the only way to ensure it is fully protected is by registering a trademark. Australian trademarks, like their U.S. counterparts, must be registered with the government to acquire protection for your assets. The cost of registering your trademark depends on the number of classes you wish to file. Assuming there are no objections or complications with your application, you can expect to spend between $1500-$2000 to register your trademark in Australia. This article will explore the process of registering a trademark in Australia and the costs associated with it.
How to Register a Trademark in Australia
The steps for registering a trademark in Australia are similar to the steps you would take in the United States. A trademark can be registered in Australia through IP Australia and is a fairly straightforward process with an experienced trademark attorney leading you through it.
Step One: Search IP Australia for existing trademarks
The first thing to do is to verify that your brand name or asset is not already registered. You will need to conduct a trademark search through the IP Australia Trademark Search. This is a vital step. It is important to determine if there are any companies that have already registered the name or asset you’re looking to trademark in your industry. An attorney conducting this search would look for not only trademarks identical to yours, but trademarks that are similar and could block your attempt to register a trademark in Australlia. This part of the process could define the success or failure of your application and ultimately cost-effectiveness. Conducting a search itself doesn’t cost anything other than the fees associated with your chosen trademark attorney.
Step Two: Determine which class your product falls under
Next, you will need to determine the class or classes that your product falls under. In your application, you must provide a description of the goods and services that you plan to use your trademark on. These descriptions of goods and services are then split into 45 categories, or classes. Once you’ve applied, you will not be able to expand this list of goods and services protected by your trademark, so think carefully and seek out an attorney’s guidance to help identify the classes you need to include. IP Australia also provides what they call a picklist – a searchable list of over 60,000 descriptions of goods and services you can choose from for your application. Using the picklist can prove to be less expensive and a safe option if you can find a description that fits the asset you are looking to register.
One thing to note, the more classes you apply for, the higher the filings costs will be for the overall application. Each class that is registered has a fee associated with it. Assuming you are using the standard filing process, the fees are listed in the table below. These are subject to change based on your attorney fees and if you have any issues with your application.
|Trademark application - with picklist||$250 per class|
|Trademark application - without picklist||$400 per class|
|Series trademark application -with picklist||$400 per class|
|Series trademark application - without picklist||$550 per class|
Step Three: Submit an application through IPAustralia.gov
The final step in the application process is to submit your application through IP Australia. The application can be submitted online and is a short submission time if you’ve prepared the application ahead of time. The application must include your name and ownership details, contact information, a visual representation of your trademark, a description of the goods or services that it’ll apply to, the classes that are relevant to that description, and the paid application fee.
What are the filings costs associated with trademark registration in Australia?
The first cost an applicant will encounter is for the application itself. As listed above, the application cost changes depending on the number of classes registered under. Through the standard filing process, applications can cost between $250 and $550 per class.
Some good news! There are no “finalization fees” to register a trademark in Australia (as there are in some other countries).
There is the chance that you will need to file for an extension during the application process. This could occur if an application needs more time while correcting an error on the application or there simply is a special circumstance. Extensions due to circumstances beyond the control of the person will incur a fee of $100. All other extension types will have a fee of $100 per month the extension is being requested for, this includes partial months.
If your trademark application is the subject of an opposition, a variety of fees could be applied. Opposition fees can be anywhere from no fee at all to $150 a month to $800. The full list of opposition fees can be found here. This is why it is encouraged to use the guidance of an experienced trademark attorney and avoid these costs where possible.
Renewing your trademark is a necessary step in keeping your assets protected, but it does come with some fees. By using the online service on IP Australia, the fee to renew a trademark single class and additional class are both $400. However, if you apply to renew your trademark after it expires, the fee is $100 for every month or a partial month after the expiration date.
In addition to the foregoing government costs, if you decide to hire an attorney for a trademark search and filing in Australia the costs can range from $1000-$1500 (and sometimes more) depending on the complexity of your application.
Overall, the process of applying for a trademark in Australia is fairly straightforward that can be made even more pain-free with the help of a trademark attorney. If you’re looking to register a trademark in Australia, it can be intimidating to find a local attorney with the right experience to help you through the process successfully. However, Gerben Law has the experience in connecting clients to trusted attorneys all over the world and would be happy to help you too!