16 Mar Just applied for a Trade Mark? Watch out for scam artists
There are an increasing number of trade mark scam artists operating who will target you asking for money. Be aware of them before making a mistake!
If you’ve just applied for your Trademark, expect to get a few phishing Trade Mark scam artists. Often from Hungary or Czech Republic they write to you with their international bank details asking you to deposit AUD $1,850 to their account to complete the transaction! Don’t pay a cent – it’s a scam!
Because it is a matter of public record, somehow these scam artists get a hold of your trademark details and address on the record and send correspondence to you by mail.
These days there are a lot of scams doing the rounds. It’s highly probable that once your trade mark application has been filed with IP Australia, you’ll receive invoices from overseas companies claiming that you owe, sometimes thousands of dollars, to keep your trade mark alive.
The only fees you need to pay to IP Australia are the application fees when you file the application and renewal fees every 10 years (unless fees are required to overcome objections raised against your application).
If a payment request does not come direct from IP Australia or your lawyer, DO NOT pay it. If you are in doubt as to whether or not you have received a scam, feel free to forward it through to us and we’ll let you know.
Luckily for our clients, we handle all the correspondence and receive hundreds of these letters.
The letter will be from something that looks semi-legitimate with “TM – Edition International Catalogue of TradeMarks” as a header.
Unfortunately there’s nothing you can do to stop these trade mark scam artists and IP Australia is aware of the issue.
Chinese Trade Mark Scams
Recently trade mark owners have been contacted by Chinese trade mark agents claiming that someone has tried to register their trade mark in China and would they like to file an opposition against the trade mark.
If you’ve received a letter or email like this, it would appear you’ve been targeted by a scammer seeking to defraud businesses through payment of fake fees.
If you have any concerns or queries at all, please get in touch.
Contact us today if you require any assistance with your trade marks.
(c) Progressive Legal Pty Ltd – All legal rights reserved (2020)
Ian Aldridge is the owner and principal lawyer at Progressive Legal. After 12 years practicing as a litigation lawyer for small, medium and large firms in Australia and the UK, Ian returned to Australia disillusioned with the way Law was being practiced at all levels, especially for small business.
Ian started Progressive Legal in 2014 and provides a range of fixed-priced legal services for small business owners. Ian changed the way legal services are provided in Australia, by building Legal Shield™, a legal subscription to obtain tailored legal documents immediately and pay over time.
Ian has completed a Degree in Economics and Law from Macquarie University, has a Diploma of Legal Practice/Professional Program from the NSW College of Law (Commercial Law, Litigation, Legal Advice) and is a Key Personal of Interest (KPI).