Trademark Registration

When the Symbols ® or TM should be used during Trademark Registration?

Symbols ® or TM
Karan Singh
| Updated: Apr 13, 2021 | Category: Trademark

A Trademark is a new and unique way to branding and recognising a product or service and aids in differentiating the products or services from competitors. Over a period of time, the idea of what is considered to be a Trademark has extended. A Trademark comprises a word, logo, shape, number, colour, letter, phrase, etc. However, the Trademark status can be known by the right use of symbols ® or TM, which are also a vital part of brand protection. In this blog, we discuss about symbols ® or TM and know when you can use such symbols during Trademark Registration.

What are the Types of Trademark Symbols? – Symbols ® or TM

Mainly, there are two different types of Trademark symbols[1]; the TM symbol and ® symbol. These are placed generally in a noticeable position, generally to the right end of a Trademarks and used by traders in the market area. But, the particular meaning of symbols cannot be broadly understood, and sometimes they are not applied properly.

  • TM Symbol: This trademark symbol is used to specify to consumers and competitors that this brand is planned to be operated as a Trademark. The use of the Trademark symbol doesn’t mean that Trademark is registered, nor does it specify that brand owners have any rights affecting to register the Trademarks under the Trade Mark Act.

This mark can be used in connection with products and not services, can use this Trademark in superscript after their brand name. This symbol indicates that a Trademark owner views mark as worthy of Trademark protection and parallel notifies the third parties not to use the Trademark or a confusingly same Trademark. Although this Trademark symbol is not as a common symbol as the ® symbol, it is still equally common on products sold.

  • ® Symbol: This symbol signifies that Trademark has been completely registered under the Trade Mark Act. It must be only used once the Trademark is fully registered as a Trademark under the Act. Hence, it validates the customers and competitors that the owner of Trademark has been granted some exclusive rights for the use of the brand name. Also, it gives protection instruments that are only available to and enforceable by registered Trademark owners under the Act. It can also help in performing as a warning to possible infringers from copying the brand name.

The symbol is used by the most individual who is aware with Trademark Registration symbol ®. This symbol can be used in links with Trademarks or Service Marks that are registered with the United States Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO). The use of ® Trademark symbolises one of Trademark Registration’s advantages because it simultaneously lends credibility to the company or the product as customers are aware of the symbol. It also warns competitors or infringers not to use the similar Trademark or Service Mark.

What are the Guidelines of Trademark Symbols?

You can check all the essential guidelines for the use of Trademark symbols:

  1. In white papers, videos, letters, advertising, press releases, foils, memos, and other multimedia presentations:
  2. Properly label (with the symbols ® or TM or SM) all of Trademarks at the most protruding use (typically a headline) and again on the 1st occurrence in copy;
  3. In the presentation graphics, Trademarks must be designated with the correct Trademark symbol on every page, foil, and slide.
  4. In magazines, newsletters, and publications comprising several articles:
  5. Correctly designate (with the symbols ® or TM or SM) all of the Trademarks on the occurrence in the headlines, Table of Contents, and the first existence in every article in which they are used.
  6. In books, yearly or quarterly reports, brochures, technical documents, and other certain documents.
  7. In all graphs or charts, correctly designate Trademarks (with the symbols ® or TM or SM) as they could be imitated or pulled and used independently.
  8. In all tag lines, including a Trademark slogan, always use the Trademark symbol in every reference.

Difference between the use of Symbols ® and TM

The TM symbol is used by any individual or business to specify that a specific logo, name, or word is intended to serve as an identifier for the source of the product or service. One should have to obtain a Trademark registration certificate before using it. But, many entities choose to use the TM symbol for a new business prior to or during the process of the Trademark application.

The ® symbol specifies that a specific logo, word, or phrase is a registered Trademark for the goods or services. It should be used in the case of registered Trademarks and by the owner or license. It should be used in the areas in which possess a usable Trademark registration.

Who can register a Trademark in India?

The applicant as a Company, an individual, or other lawful entity who claims to be a Trademark owner can apply for Trademark Registration in India. A Trademark application should be filed within few days, and after the registration, one case uses the “TM” symbol. Once the Trademark gets registered, it will be valid for ten years from the date of filing; moreover, it can be renewed from time to time.


The primary step to bring the brand name under Trademark registration is applying for it. So, it’s obvious that applying for online registration is far more achievable than the conservative ways of offline Trademark application. For the registration, you must hire an expert who provides various services regarding the process of Trademark Registration.

Read our article:Know 5 Things to Consider for Application of Trademark Registration

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Karan Singh

A legal writing enthusiast, a wanderer, and a zealous reader. After gaining a lot of knowledge about the diverse legal topics and developing research skills, Karan joined the league of legal content writers to deliver quality-rich blogs.

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