Trading names

If you want to trade under a specific name, you need to register it as a business name with the Australian Securities and Investments Commission (ASIC).

You don't need to register a business name if you trade under your own name ('John Smith'), but you'll need to have a business name if it's anything else ('John Smith Plumbing').

The ABN Lookup contains a list of all Australian Business Numbers (ABNs). When you register a business name with ASIC, it will also be displayed against the associated ABN record on ABN Lookup.

Before 28 May 2012, the Australian Business Register (ABR) collected names used by entities to carry out their business activities.  The ABR display these names as trading names, but trading name records have not been updated since the national business names register commenced on 28 May 2012.

Trading names do not meet the requirements of a registered business name.

How to register a business name

You can register your business name online using the Australian Government's Business Registration Service.

You cannot register a business name that is identical to one already on the register.

Business name fees

The fees for registering a business name are:

  • $36 for one year
  • $84 for three years

Once your registration period is over, you'll need to renew your business name if you still want to trade. The fees for renewal are the same as registration.

The name I want is not available. What should I do?

If the name you want isn't available, we recommend altering your choice so that it differs from any existing names. For example, instead of "Bunch of Apples', try 'Sam's Bunch of Apples'.

Once I've registered, what do I need to do?

Once the business name has been registered, we'll email you a copy of your record of registration. You can then trade using the name.

If your details change, you must update your details with us. (for example, if you've moved addresses).

You must prominently display your business name wherever you're open to the public, like at your storefront. You must also include your ABN on any business correspondence that you send out, like invoices or purchase orders.

Related links

Last updated: 10/08/2018 11:55