New “.au” Direct Domain Names Launching 24 March

From 24 March 2022, Australians will be able to register a new, shorter category of domain name, .au direct domain names through participating auDA-accredited registrars. Interested individuals and entities should apply to register their desired .au direct domain name on or shortly after 24 March 2022 or risk losing it to someone else.

Registrants of an existing Australian domain name should consider whether they would like to register the corresponding .au direct domain name and ensure that their existing domain name registration details are up to date.

If you have an existing domain name

A person who wishes to apply for a .au direct name that is an exact match of their existing domain name under their eligible license must make an application for Priority Status through an accredited registrar during the six-month priority Application Period (from 24 March 2022 until 20 September 2022).

If there are no applications for a reserved .au direct domain name from an eligible registrant during the Priority Application Period, that name will become available to the public on a first come, first served basis. 

If you are considering registering a new domain name

New registrants can apply for a new .au direct name that is not already registered in any existing .au namespace (from 24 March 2022).

If the name is not already registered, consider whether to register the name in the com.au or org.au or net.au namespace before 24 March 2022 to gain Priority Status for the corresponding .au direct domain name from 24 March 2022.

What’s included in the toolkit?

Resource 1: legal update, new .au direct domain names registrable from 24 March 2022

The legal update, includes information about:

  • Who can apply for a .au direct domain name
  • Where to apply
  • The priority allocation process for registering an exact match of an existing domain name in the .au country code

Resource 2: practice note, domain names

The Practice note, Domain names discusses the different domain names in the .au country code, the rules for who can register what names and what name they can have and managing an Australian domain name.

These resources are accurate at the time of first publication and are written by Practical Law’s experienced team of 30+ in-house lawyer writers that create and maintain resources so that you can respond quickly and effectively as regulation updates unfold.

Joanne is a solicitor and registered Trade Marks Attorney, with more than 15 years’ experience practising at top-tier and boutique law firms and as in-house counsel for an ASX listed entity with international operations. She has also worked for a government regulatory organisation. Joanne has experience in intellectual property and all areas of trade mark law, and commercial practice including contracts, marketing, compliance and consumer law.

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