Info sheet on possibility of rejection

Rejection of an application for Trade mark registration


Why is a Trademark (TM) registration application rejected?

  • An application will be rejected if your proposed trademark will be considered similar to that of a TM that has already been registered.


What factors are considered in rejecting applications?


An application for registration is rejected if it is ‘substantially identical’ or ‘deceptively similar’ to an already existing TM.

How is this assessed?


  1. Substantially identical
  • By looking at the similarities and differences between the 2 TM’s.
  • The essential features of the previous TM’s will be identified, this will then be compared to the features of the second TM
  1. Deceptively similar
  • TM applications are evaluated by looking at the impression left by the mark on potential
  • The possibility of the TM causing public confusion or misleading the public will be


How to avoid rejection?


  1. Try to avoid using Logo’s or words that are already registered as TM’s.
  2. A quick way to do this would be to conduct a search on Australian Trade Mark
  3. Make an application under TM Headstart, a process that enables you to test the likely success of your application before a public application is made.
    1. Here an examiner of IP Australia will provide an initial assessment within 5
    2. Subsequent to the receipt of the application, you may make changes if needed or dispose the


Difference between the standard application and the TM Head start application



Standard application

TM Headstart


Total Cost

starts at $250 per class

Total Cost

starts at $330 per class

Pre-assessment by an examiner

Feedback within 5 days of request

Speak directly with an examiner

Amend your application prior to filing

Receive an immediate filing date

Formal report within 13 weeks

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