Businesses, Agents and Trade Professionals

Intellectual Property (IP)

IP is defined as creations of the mind that can be protected by law once they take a tangible form.

Import provisions under the Copyright Act 1968, Trade Marks Act 1995 and Olympic Insignia Protection Act 1987 allow us, under certain circumstances, to seize goods that infringe trade marks, copyright and protected Olympic expressions. These provisions give rise to Australia's Notice of Objection Scheme.

A Notice of Objection is a legal document that allows us to seize imported goods that infringe trade marks, copyright or protected Olympic expressions.

The Department is restricted to seizing suspected infringing goods that are subject to customs control and are covered by a valid Notice of Objection.

If a Notice of Objection is in place, we may seize goods if they appear to infringe and it appears they are intended for some commercial purposes. In some circumstances, a single product might be subject to seizure if it is believed that it will be used for commercial purposes.

A Notice of Objection under the Copyright Act, Trade Marks Act or Olympic Insignia Protection Act is valid for four years. Notices can be re-lodged to ensure ongoing protection. If the Notice is no longer required, the owner may withdraw it at any time. Separate Notices are required to protect copyright, trade marks or protected Olympic expressions.

A Notice of Objection cannot act retrospectively for goods that have already been imported.

Fact sheet