Guidelines for ministerial consent-restricted words and expressions-trading as proprietor

‘Trading as’ and ‘proprietor’ are restricted words and expressions under Part 1 of Schedule 2 of the Names Determination.

The term 'trading as' may imply that an entity is trading under an alternative name to the registered entity. To include 'trading as' in a name may suggest to the public that the words preceding or subsequent to 'trading as' are the registered entity when this may not be the case. A registered business name is the trading name ie. if Joe Smith is trading as 'Flying Flowers', then the registered business name is 'Flying Flowers', not 'Joe Smith trading as Flying Flowers'.

The word 'proprietor' is defined as the legal owner of a business entity. To include 'proprietor' in a name may suggest to the public that the words preceding or subsequent to 'proprietor' is the name of the legal owner of the business name when this may not be the case.

Criteria for the assessment of applications

Applicants seeking Ministerial consent to the use of ‘trading as’ or ‘proprietor’ in a proposed business name will need to demonstrate that the name will not mislead consumers dealing with the entity about:

(a) the type of entity (e.g. the nature of the entity's registration or incorporation, including any words or expressions required to be used as part of the entity's name) or 

(b) the nature of the entity’s activities.

Further links


Business Names Registration Act 2011

This Act details the legislative framework for business names in Australia.

Business Names Registration (Availability of Names) Determination 2015


This Determination provides the rules for determining whether proposed business names are identical or nearly identical, restricted words and expressions, and the kinds of names that are undesirable.

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Last updated: 30/04/2014 12:00