Start-up businesses – Legal package
Start-up-businesses must realise it is important to select a name which is capable of distinguishing your business from other businesses in the same trade. Such distinctive name will have a trade mark function. Trade marks are registered on the Trade Mark Register. If you are considering forming a company, for convenience, registration of the same name/trade mark could also be considered on the Companies Register.
With the increase of internet users, electronic communication and e-commerce, it is important to consider the availability and registration of your new business name on relevant Domain Name Registers. The .CO.ZA domain name space is the most important for South African businesses. Domain names are registered on a “first come, first served” basis.
There is no cross-referencing between the South African Trade Marks Register, South African Companies Register and relevant Domain Name Registers. Due to this factor, disputes arise, if different traders use and register their names on the different Registers concerned. Such disputes could cost start-up businesses dearly in time and money, and many start-up businesses do not have sufficient funds to start over with a new name, if they have to change their names due to a name or trade mark conflict.
For this purpose, we are offering a package of services for South African start-up businesses which include all the checks and registrations mentioned above. The total cost of the total service package is R11 000 (excl VAT) and the break-down and details of the services covered are set out below.
The checks described at points 1 to 3 will cost R2500 (excl VAT) and usually takes about 7 working days, depending on the assistance rate at the Registries.
The Companies Office (CIPC) offers a standard template MOI for the registrations of new companies. However, the adoption of this standard MOI is not recommended, or acceptable for this start-up package, as it inter alia gives directors wider powers, fails to stipulate accounting obligations, and can expose private companies to the same risks and liabilities of public companies.
The New Companies Act provides for unalterable provisions and alterable provision which should be reflected in a MOI. The MOI should thus reflect the unalterable (compulsory) provisions and special consideration should be given to the insertion of the alterable provisions to suit each company’s special needs and rules.
The actions described at points 5 to 7 will cost R5500 (excl VAT).
The action at point 5 includes classifying the mark, preparing and filing the application, reporting thereon, monitoring the application, following-up at the Registry, necessary file attendances, preparing and forwarding a Power of Attorney, (late) lodging of the Power of Attorney after filing (before the official action is issued by the Registry), receiving the signed acceptance notice and arranging for advertisement of the mark in the Patent Journal, if unconditionally accepted, payment of official fees and normal disbursements. If no objections/requirements are raised by the Registrar or third parties, no additional charges should be raised, except for the issuance of the Registration Certificate after about 2 to 4 years from the filing date.
Our reports relating to the above package of services may also include additional recommendations which will cost extra for broader protection.
These service packages are further only available to South African citizens, or persons / businesses with domicilium in South Africa, and able to pay accounts in South African Rands from local bank accounts.
The above cost indications are valid until 1 December 2013.
You are welcome to contact us, if you are interested in proceeding on this basis, or have any queries.
Starting a Business
Protecting New Ideas