Trading as ..............

I am so often asked about the legality and technicality of "trading as ............"

The legal position arises from the Consumer Protection Act. It states that any business trading under a name other than its own (e.g. ABC CC trading as XYZ) must register the trading name with CIPC (the old CIPRO).

CIPC then issued a statement to the effect that they do not have the capacity to register trading names (you'd think that the drafters of the Act would have checked with CIPC first) so it became impossible to comply with the Consumer Protection Act.

So anyone or any company or CC can call themselves "ABC (Pty) Ltd trading as XYZ" and that's the way it's usually done, the registered name very small and the trade name very prominent.

Note that the registered name must be given correctly and also note that the XYZ does not, and may not, have (Pty) Ltd after it.

What happens if you have traded as XYZ for 10 years and someone then registers the name XYZ (Pty) Ltd. Are you protected? No, not automatically, you would have to fight it in court and you may or may not win. So the safest thing to do is change the name of your company or CC from ABC to XYZ.


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