Successfully registering a trade mark is a huge achievement for any business. However, it is important to remember that your trade mark is only registered for 10 years. When the time comes, you will receive a trade mark renewal letter from IP Australia. This article provides a step-by-step guide for renewing your trade mark. 

1. Update Your Details

Before renewing your trade mark, you will need to advise IP Australia of any changes to your personal details. If you do not keep your details up to date then you may run the risk of not receiving important correspondences from IP Australia.

You can update your name or address by submitting a request through IP Australia’s online services.

2. Remove Classes if Desired

Over the years, you may have found that some classes of goods or services that you originally registered under are no longer relevant for your business.

For example, you may be a florist business who registered your trade mark under class 31 (e.g. fresh flowers), class 21 (e.g. flower pots, vases) and class 39 (e.g. flower delivery). If your business no longer offers delivery, you may want to remove class 39.

It is important to note that once your trade mark has been registered, you cannot add classes to it.

If you want to remove a class from your trade mark registration, you must submit an online request at least three weeks before the renewal due date. Otherwise, you may not be able to renew your trade mark and may be required to pay additional fees.

3. Pay the Renewal Fee

The most efficient way of renewing your trade mark for a further 10 years is through IP Australia’s online services, where you can pay the renewal fee online. The renewal is effective immediately.

You can pay the renewal fee from 12 months before the renewal due date, or up to six months after the renewal due date (known as the six-month grace period).

Once you pay the renewal fee, the registrar will confirm that your trade mark registration has been renewed and advise of the renewal period. You can also check the status of your trade mark registration on the Australian Trade Mark Search.

What Happens if I Do Not Renew My Trade Mark on Time?

Your trade mark will be removed from the register and cannot be reinstated if you do not pay your renewal fee on time. Accordingly, you will no longer have the exclusive rights to use, license and sell your trade mark. This runs the risk of someone else using or registering your trade mark.

If you want to continue using your trade mark after the renewal date has expired, you will need to submit a new application. However, this means that you will no longer have the priority date of your original filing date 10 years ago. This means that your trade mark will be reviewed again by IP Australia. Any similar trade marks that have been registered within the last ten years may be raised as a conflict.

Unsolicited Trade Mark Invoices

It is important to be aware that your trade mark ownership details are publicly available. As a result, unscrupulous organisations may try and contact you about your trade mark registration or renewal.

For example, it is common for these organisations to send letters appearing to be invoices for renewing your trade mark. The only organisation that you should receive correspondence from regarding your trade mark is the law firm assisting with your trade mark or IP Australia.

Key Takeaways

Renewing your trade mark every 10 years is a crucial step in ensuring that your trade mark remains protected. When the time arrives, you can renew your trade mark in three easy steps:

  1. update your details, including your name and address;
  2. if desired, remove classes from your trade mark registration; and
  3. pay the renewal fee online.

Your trade mark will be removed from the register if you do not pay the fee on time. If you have any trade mark questions, contact LegalVision’s trade mark lawyers on 1300 544 755 or fill out the form on this page.

Graci Chen
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