Introduction to the National Business Names Register

Friday, June 8, 2012 by Wakeful Partners | No Comments

A new national business names registration system will commence on 28 May 2012.

Currently, business names are registered in the state or territory where the business is located and each state and territory keeps its own register. The national register of business names will replace these existing state and territory registers.

The Australian Securities and Investments Commission (ASIC) will administer the new national business names register.

Benefits of the new national register

The national register will offer South Australian 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.
  • South Australia businesses will benefit from reduced registration fees.  

Transistion to the new national register

The South Australia register ceased operation at 5pm on Friday 25 May.

As a business name holder in South Australia you do not have to do anything during the transition. All existing South Australian business names have automatically transitioned to the national register.

All of your business name details will transition to the national register, including your existing expiry date. So if your South Australian 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.

Duplicate names

If you have registered the same business name in multiple jurisdictions, all of your business names will 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 be transitioned to the national business names register. An additional identifier (such as the word ‘South Australia’) 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 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.


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