What’s new

31 May 2018

Changes to Trading Names Register

Changes to Trading Names Register

In May 2012 a new national business name register was introduced through ASIC, replacing the trading name registers previously managed separately by each state and territory. There has been a grace period in effect since then to allow businesses and trading name owners sufficient time to transition over to the new business name register.

From November 2018 all trading names will be removed from ABN Lookup. This means when someone searches your ABN number or business name through the ABR website, any associated trading names will no longer be displayed next to your ABN.

If you want to continue trading under a specific name, you need to register it as a business name with ASIC. You can do this online through ASIC Connect. You will need to quote your ABN when you apply.

If you are a sole trader that trades under your own name (e.g. John Smith) you don’t need to register this as a business name, however, something like John Smith Design would need to be registered as a business name.

Business names cannot be identical to another name already on the register. To check availability of a business name please check the ASIC website here.

A business name can be registered for either 1 year or 3 years. Once you have registered your business name with ASIC you will receive a record of registration and then a reminder from ASIC when your business name is set to expire.


Liability limited by a scheme approved under Professional Standards Legislation. Liability is limited in those States where a current scheme applies.   

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