In brief - Beware of false billing scams and consider an internal process to manage this risk

You are more than likely to receive scamming notices and bogus invoices in relation to your registered trade marks.

Unscrupulous operators can find you easily because trade mark registration details are available on the web.

Often what you will receive looks like the real deal. So it is easy to be conned and you end up paying 10 or 20 times more what is a fair charge for a process in connection with your trade mark, or paying for something that isn't even needed.

IP Australia, the government agency for trade marks, regularly issues warnings of its own. However, there is not much that can be done to stop those operators.

So – forewarned is forearmed. It's best to have an internal process that makes sure that anything to do with a registered trade mark goes to a designated person in your business who knows to do some checking to avoid getting caught – especially if it comes from someone you haven't dealt with before. 

Don't be caught out just because some sharp operator dresses themselves up to make themselves look legitimate, reputable or official.

These are just some examples of the wider problem that many of us see these days in the form of unofficial invoices and the like. IP Australia accepts reports of such materials via email to MDB-UnsolicitedCorrespondence@ipaustralia.gov.au. The ACCC runs its own SCAMwatch on false billing and also accept reports.

This is commentary published by Colin Biggers & Paisley for general information purposes only. This should not be relied on as specific advice. You should seek your own legal and other advice for any question, or for any specific situation or proposal, before making any final decision. The content also is subject to change. A person listed may not be admitted as a lawyer in all States and Territories. © Colin Biggers & Paisley, Australia 2019.

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