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Are you ready for your annual Franchise Disclosure Document update?

If you’re a franchisor, your Franchise Disclosure Document needs to be updated at least annually – and ensuring it’s done properly is essential to meet your compliance obligations under Australia’s Franchising Code of Conduct. As a Franchisor, you must provide a Franchise Disclosure Document to anyone considering becoming a franchisee of your business at least two weeks before a non-refundable payment is made by a franchisee, or a franchise agreement is entered into.

Trade marking your business can save you a lot!

Many small business owners delay trade marking their business names – and other key business ‘marks’, like logos and catchphrases, only to regret the decision when legal challenges arise. Failing to act early in the trade marking arena can be costly, time consuming and may cause confusion that impacts your business’ growth. Your organisation’s trading name and logo are essential ways consumers and other companies identify your business and help create goodwill for your brand. Losing the opportunity to use these after you’ve built up goodwill is, therefore, very challenging and potentially expensive.

DC Two strengthens cyber security capabilities with Thomas Cyber acquisition.

We are excited to congratulate Thomas Cyber in their successful acquisition by DC Two Limited. This marks a significant milestone for DC Two’s expansion into the technology market, and reflects the hard work of Thomas Cyber’s directors, Thomas Jreige and Kristen Rayson. We have spent the last few months working with Thomas and Kristen, providing strategic guidance and navigating complex legal issues. We are grateful to have aided their transition and to have received the following testimonial,

Who Owns The Copyright To ChatGPT Generated Copy?

Intellectual property is at the core of technology. This has never been clearer with the introduction of Artificial Intelligence (AI) chatbot tools, such as ChatGPT, that can generate written copy for a variety of applications. Recently, its ability to generate human-like responses instantaneously has gained popularity.

Pop star’s trade mark loss shows brand protection is key.

Pop star Katy Perry has lost a trade mark battle with Australian fashion designer Katie Perry, which underscores the importance of the trade mark registration process to protect brands worldwide. Late last week, a judge ruled the American singer-songwriter did indeed breach the fashion designer’s trade mark when she sold clothing for her 2014 concert tour of Australia. Damages are yet to be decided but Katy Perry’s company will soon learn what compensation it must pay, and it could be costly.

Trademark Application for your business in Australia

Did you know that registering a business name with ASIC does not provide you with any exclusivity? Unless you have trade marked your business name, other third parties may be able to register and use the same or similar business names to you. The name your business trades under is how your customers and other businesses identify you. It’s critical to protect the goodwill your business brand develops. You can do this by lodging a trade mark application for your business name with IP Australia.

Are your Managed Services Agreements up to date?

A Managed Services Agreement (MSA) covers the terms and conditions of IT managed services providers (MSPs). These agreements address the customers’ IT needs, such as software support and maintenance, data storage, recovery and backup, network monitoring cloud services and more. Recent large-scale cyberattacks and privacy breaches impacting millions of Australian Medibank and Optus customers have highlighted just how critical it is to have clear agreements in place. These legal agreements – or contracts – offer vital protection for MSPs by outlining the details of an IT company’s relationship with its clients. Ultimately, these terms and conditions aim to reduce the likelihood of being sued by your customers and limit your liability in disputes.

Is franchising your next business growth strategy?

When considering how to grow your SME business and capitalise on the success of your established brand, it’s wise to look at franchising to see if it’s a good fit for your enterprise. Franchising is a $172 billion industry in Australia, made up of more than 94,000 businesses, according to IBIS World. Franchise operations are found in a variety of industries from real estate to mortgage broking, bookkeeping, travel, retail, and food outlets, and the sector employs well over half a million people nationally.

Trade Mark Registration – Protect Your Brand Starting Today

A trade mark lawyer assists business owners in registering their trade marks. Registering a trade mark is an effective way for your business to protect its brand. You can read our article “Trade Marks and Brand Protection” by clicking here if you would like to learn what a trade mark is. A trade mark specialist can submit applications for trade marks on your behalf, as well as address any opposition claims made against your application and any other issues that may arise in an adverse report during the application process.

Trade Mark Searches – A Guideline for Conducting Trade Mark Searches Internationally

If you are looking to expand your business internationally, or intend to in the future, it’s important to trade mark your business name and products in every country you intend to operate in. This allows you to protect your brand from being used by someone else and enables you to defend a claim if a competitor overseas claims you are breaching their trade mark. Whenever your business expands to a new country, you will need to conduct a trade mark search on the relevant country's intellectual property office website to ensure there are no conflicting trade marks registered in that country. You can find this using the World Intellectual Property Organisation (WIPO) directory.