Trade Mark vs Registered Trademark

Trade Mark vs Registered Trademark

Entrepreneurs building businesses should always ensure that they register their brands with trademark authorities. Understandably, entrepreneurs have limited time, and resources to do everything, however, registering a trademark is quite essential and non-registration of TM can cost a lot. A trademark is a recognizable sign, design, or expression that identifies products or services of a particular source from those of others. Trademark can be owned by an individual, business organization, or any legal entity.


There are two symbols commonly used to mark trademarks, they are TM and ®

Trademarks not officially registered can instead be marked with the trademark symbol TM. The symbol TM is to be used for marks that either have a pending TM application or for marks that are simply claiming the rights to the mark. The proper manner to display these symbols is immediately following the mark, and is commonly in superscript style but is not legally required The registered TM symbol ® is used to indicate that your trademark is registered with the government, which gives you a wider range of statutory remedies in case of infringement. In addition, a registered TM has tremendous financial value attached to it. As a business owner, you should only use the registered symbol if you’ve actually registered the trademark formally,

The decision to use TM or R is not an arbitrary one; there are regulatory restrictions on the use of trademark signifiers, and it is important to be aware of these restrictions so that you are not inadvertently breaking the law while attempting to protect your trademark.

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What is the difference between TM vs. R? Do trademarks need to be registered before being claimed as trademarks?

The above questions can be better explained as under :

Legal StatusNo legal protectionLegal Protection
Registration StatusUnregistered MarkRegistered Mark
UsageTM can be used when an application for registration of a trademark is pending® is used when the trademark is registered and a Registration certificate is issued.

As TM and ® are two distinct marks, the decision to use TMor® TM is not an arbitrary one, there are several restrictions on the use of the TM symbol, and it is important to be aware of these restrictions so that you are not inadvertently breaking the law while attempting to protect your trademark.

Wherein, it is necessary to always use the correct TM symbol with your trademark. Importantly, for registered TMs, the use of the ® symbol may be necessary to claim damages and court costs if your business has to sue a competitor. If you have not properly noticed your trademark, you may not be able to obtain money damages or recover your costs.

The overall objective of the TM is to provide better protection for goods and services and also to prevent fraudulent use of the mark. In addition, your registered TM also identifies the origin of the product, guards your commercial goodwill, and protects the consumers from buying goods of inferior quality.

In case you have been running your business and in a busy schedule and forgot to register your TM, please take the decision now and get the TM registered ASAP. Any delay in registration has the potential of refusal by authorities in case someone else has already taken a smart move and filed for registration for similar services.

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