Business names used to be registered in the state or territory where the business was located and each state and territory kept its own register. The national register of business names replaces the existing state and territory registers.
The Australian Securities and Investments Commission (ASIC) now administers the new national business names register.
Benefits of the new national register
The national register offers Queensland businesses many advantages:
- The national system eliminates the need for businesses who trade across state borders to register their name in multiple jurisdictions.
- Businesses will be able to register and renew their national business name online.
Online payment options will also be available.
- Business name registration will be combined into a single online transaction with
the registration of an Australian Business Number.
- Queensland businesses will benefit from reduced registration fees (details below).
Transition to the new national register
The Queensland register ceased operation at 5pm on Friday 25 May.
As a business name holder in Queensland, you do not have to do anything during the transition. All existing Queensland business names automatically transition to the national register in preparation for its commencement on Monday 28 May.
All of your business name details transitioned to the national register, including your existing expiry date. So if your Queensland business name is due to expire on 1 December 2012, this is the date that ASIC will record as the expiry date of your new national business name.
If you have registered the same business name in multiple jurisdictions, all of your business names will have transitioned to the national business names register, meaning that you may have multiple identical business names registered to you.
Under the new system, you can choose to keep one of your business names and let the rest expire. If you prefer, you can speed up this process by cancelling any business name that you no longer require. There is no fee to cancel a business name.
If the same business name has been registered by different businesses in different jurisdictions, all of the business names will still have been transitioned to the national business names register. An additional identifier (such as the word ‘Queensland’) will appear on the register to assist in differentiating between identical business names.
This additional identifier will not form part of your business name, meaning that you can continue to trade using the business name you have always had.
Renewing your business name
If your business name was due for renewal before 28 May 2012, you should already have received your business name renewal form from the Office of Fair Trading. You will need to renew your business name in Queensland, prior to the transition to the national register. If you haven’t already done so, please ensure that you lodge your form and appropriate fee as soon as possible.
If your business name is due for renewal on or after 28 May 2012, ASIC will send you a business name renewal form and you will renew on the national register.
If your business name is due for renewal between 28 May 2012 and mid to late June 2012, you may receive your renewal notice from ASIC a bit later than you would normally expect it. If you do, you will get an extension of time in which to renew, so that you are not disadvantaged.
Once the transition to the national register is complete, fees for Queensland businesses will be cheaper. Online payment options such as BPay and credit card payment will be available. Registering an ABN will remain free.
- New application for registration of a business name for 1 year – $30
- Application for renewal of a business name for 1 year – $30
- New application for registration of a business name for 3 years – $70
- Application for renewal of a business name for 3 years – $70
Note: Fees are current as at 23 June, 2012. They are subject to change at the start of each new financial year.