Tertiary education program

Advertisements using an existing name or design

Advertisements may be misleading or deceptive if, without permission, they feature the name, logo or design of another business or person. It may also be misleading or deceptive for a business to copy an existing product and then advertise it under its own name.

Legal responsibility will arise in such cases when a reasonable member of the target audience is misled, or is likely to be misled, into thinking there is some kind of connection between the businesses, or the products, when there is not.

Case studies:

  1. Adopting the same promotional designs and images as a rival firm may cause consumers to be misled into thinking that the businesses are cooperating, or that one has endorsed the other, or that their products are now the same.
    See: The Kettle Chip Co Pty Ltd v Apand Pty Ltd [1993] FCA 546
  2. Using the name or imagery associated with a well-known personality without permission may mislead consumers into thinking that the personality has endorsed the product, or that there is some form of cooperation between them and the business.
    See: Pacific Dunlop Ltd v Hogan [1989] FCA 185
  3. Promoting a new product using a television presenter and slogan previously associated with a well-established rival product may cause consumers to be misled into thinking that the two products are connected in some way, or that the original business has introduced a new product line.
    See: R & C Products v SC Johnson & Sons [1993] FCA 198