What’s In A Name? Update – Oct 2018

A deadline is approaching, but has been extended – still, don’t miss out!

If your business has a ‘trading name’ and the goodwill of your business associated with it – IT WILL DISAPPEAR FROM 1 NOVEMBER THIS YEAR  in 2023!

That’s right! Trading names will no longer be recognised and will be removed from the National Business Names Register from the end of October 2023. Businesses are now required to register a business name when they want to trade under a name other than their legal entity name.

Let’s start at the beginning, or rather 28th May 2012. This is the date that the National Business Names Register came in to being. Prior to this date business and trading names  were registered by the states. A transition period from 28 May 2012 to 31 October 2018 is in place to allow businesses who have trading names to decide whether to register them as a ‘business name’.

UPDATE: October 2018 – the government has decided to extend the deadline to October 31st 2023. Here is their statement…

“Trading names were to be retired from 1 November 2018, but transitional arrangements have now been extended for a further five years to 31 October 2023. This gives affected businesses more time to inform their customers, suppliers and other stakeholders of any changes to the name that they use to conduct their business.

This extended transitional period will provide additional time for the business community to take steps to register your business name External site with the Australian Securities and Investments Commission.

ABN Lookup will continue to display all trading names until 31 October 2023.”

So what is a ‘trading name’ versus a ‘business name’ anyway?

According to the Federal Government a ‘trading name’ refers to an unregistered name that businesses could use before the introduction of the National Business Names Register. A trading name is NOT a registered business name.

Businesses are now required to register a business name when they want to trade under a name other than their legal entity name. A registered business name helps customers find, identify and connect with your business. You can have multiple business names linked to your one ABN. When you come to sell your business some of the goodwill value will be in the business name, logo, reputation etc. You do not want to find out at the point of sale that you don’t have the business name registered.

As a business owner, what should you do?

  1. Check what business or trading names are currently attached to your ABN. This is very simple to do. Go to ABN Lookup and put your ABN in the search box. It will then display your business details and list any business or trading names associated with that ABN.
  2. Decide what ‘trading name(s)’ you want to keep.
  3. Now register your ‘trading name’ as a ‘business name’ and the best place to start is Register Business Name

REMEMBER: To continue using a trading name after October 2018  2023, you have to register it as a business name.

For more information about trading names, business names and legal names, go to LEARN MORE

See our EVENTS AND WORKSHOPS around growing your business and having a business that’s ready for sale.

In Business Owners Board we keep members focused on growing their businesses and working towards have a business that is ready for sale. A business that’s ready for sale is well worth keeping! For more information on Business Owners Board CONTACT US

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John Denton

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