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  • Steve Davey

How can I stop counterfeit versions of my goods from entering Australia?

We can assist you with blocking the import of infringing goods.

If you are the owner of a registered trade mark and you are concerned about the import of infringing goods, a "Notice of Objection" filed with Australian Customs can be used stop the import of counterfeit goods. Customs will seize infringing goods. The Objector and Infringer are notified of the seizure.

The Importer must make a claim for release of seized goods within ten working days of notification. If no claim for release is requested, the goods are forfeited.

If a claim for release is made, the Objector will be notified and will have ten working days to commence legal action. This is called the “action period”. Before the end of the action period the Objector has the option to commence legal action, or consent to the release of the goods to the Importer. If the Objector does not commence legal action within the action period, Customs must release the goods unless they have been voluntarily forfeited by the Importer.

At any point prior to the commencement of legal action, the Importer may voluntarily forfeit the goods. At the conclusion of any legal action, the Court will make an order about the goods – either order the goods be released to the Importer or that they will be forfeited to the Commonwealth. Customs will dispose of the forfeited goods as directed by the Customs CEO, usually by destruction or donation to a charity, as appropriate.

The Notice of Objection is valid for a four year period and able to be updated and re-lodged.

A Deed of Undertaking must be provided to Customs, whereby the Objector undertakes that it will pay any costs incurred by Customs while enforcing the Notice. This may include the cost of temporarily storing the infringing goods in Custom's warehouse.

A list of companies or individuals authorised to import goods bearing the trade mark covered by the Notice should be provided to Customs. Any information which may assist Customs to enforce the Notice (e.g. companies or individuals importing alleged infringing goods into Australia, including any particulars of shipments due to arrive), should be provided to Customs.

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