What do TM and Circle R (®) symbols mean? - Patent Trademark Blog | IP Q&A (2024)


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    What do TM and Circle R (®) symbols mean? - Patent Trademark Blog | IP Q&A (1)

    What does the TM symbol mean?

    The TM symbol placed next to a mark is meant to put the public on notice that the owner considers that particular mark to be proprietary. In other words, the owner is claiming rights to that mark even if a trademark application has not been filed. As discussed further below, a circle R symbol may be used only when a trademark is registered.

    Need to file a flat rate trademark application? Email US patent and trademark attorney Vic Lin at vlin@icaplaw.com or call Vic at (949) 223-9623 to explore working with us.

    Find out why Vic’s trademark allowance rate is 83% when the average rate is only 50%.

    Does the TM symbol mean that a trademark application has been filed?

    No, the TM symbol does not signify that a trademark application is pending. In fact, it is entirely lawful to use the TM symbol to signify unregistered common law rights to a mark for which federal registration has not been applied.

    Not all marks are protectable, and the fact that a company placed a TM symbol next to a term or slogan does not necessarily mean that they have the right to stop others from using the term. Nonetheless, it is useful to know where a competitor is coming from if you see the TM symbol next to an unregistered mark. If you’re thinking of using or applying for a similar mark, you may want to reconsider unless you have strong arguments for making fair use of the term.

    What is the difference between TM and SM symbols?

    Both TM and SM symbols serve the same purpose: providing notice that an owner considers a particular mark to be proprietary. When a mark is used in connection with services, the mark is technically called a service mark. So the SM symbol can be applied to marks for services while the TM symbol can be applied to marks for goods.

    What does the circle R symbol (®) mean?

    The circle R symbol (®) means that a mark is federally registered with the US Patent and Trademark Office, either on the Principal Register or Supplemental Register.

    When is it OK to use the circle R symbol?

    Do not use the® symbol if you have not yet secured a federal registration of your mark. Filing a trademark application alone does not entitle you to use the circle R symbol.

    If you are launching new products under a new mark and need to file a Statement of Use for an Intent-To-Use application, make sure the mark shown on the product or packaging omits the circle R symbol. In filing a Statement of Use, it would be acceptable to submit specimens showing the TM or SM symbol.

    How to use the® symbol

    The ® symbol is typically placed in the upper right hand corner or lower right hand corner of a mark that is registered with the USPTO.

    Can you submit specimens with the circle R symbol?

    If a foreign applicant is using the circle R symbol on specimens due to a foreign registration, then such use may be proper. Such use, however, may invite an Office Action if the Examining Attorney cannot determine whether the mark is registered in a foreign country.

    Countries that use the circle R symbol include:

    • Belgium
    • China
    • Costa Rica
    • Denmark
    • Ecuador
    • Germany
    • Hungary
    • Luxembourg
    • Netherlands
    • Nicaragua
    • Poland
    • Sweden

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    Contact US patent and trademark attorney Vic Lin by email or call (949) 223-9623. We can help you determine the right type of trademark application to file and search for similar trademarks before filing. Save time and money by avoiding common mistakes made by do-it-yourself trademark filers.

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    What do TM and Circle R (®) symbols mean? - Patent Trademark Blog | IP Q&A (2)

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    What do TM and Circle R (®) symbols mean? - Patent Trademark Blog | IP Q&A (2024)


    What do TM and Circle R (®) symbols mean? - Patent Trademark Blog | IP Q&A? ›

    Registered vs.

    What does the R in a circle mean vs TM? ›

    You do not have to have registered a trademark to use it and many companies will opt to use the TM symbol for new goods or services in advance of and during the application process. The R symbol indicates that this word, phrase, or logo is a registered trademark for the product or service.

    What is the use of TM and R symbols? ›

    In summary, the trademark symbol (™) is used for unregistered or pending trademarks, while the registered trademark symbol (®) is used specifically for marks that have been officially registered.

    What is the R symbol in Uspto? ›

    The federal registration symbol, the R enclosed within a circle, may be used once the mark is actually registered in the USPTO.

    What does the R in the circle symbol mean? ›

    The R circle logo, also known as the registered trademark symbol, indicates that a word, phrase, symbol, or design has been officially registered with the trademark office. The R logo provides legal protection and exclusive rights to the registered trademark owner.

    What does TM mean in a circle? ›

    What does the TM symbol mean? The TM symbol placed next to a mark is meant to put the public on notice that the owner considers that particular mark to be proprietary. In other words, the owner is claiming rights to that mark even if a trademark application has not been filed.

    What is the R with a circle around it Emoji? ›

    A registered trademark symbol, a circled capital letter R for registered. Registered was approved as part of Unicode 1.1 in 1993 under the name "Registered Sign" and added to Emoji 1.0 in 2015.

    Can I use the R symbol without registering? ›

    You're only allowed to use this symbol with a federally registered mark for the goods/services specified in the registration. While you're not legally required to use the ® symbol, you should.

    Can I use a trademark without registration? ›

    As long as your trademark's distinctiveness identifies your product and services, you may claim trademark rights for your unregistered trademark and stop others—even bigger companies—from using your mark, but only in your geographic area.

    How do you type the TM and R symbol? ›

    To insert the trademark symbol, press Ctrl+Alt+T. To insert the registered trademark symbol, press Ctrl+Alt+R.

    What is the R next to a trademark? ›

    The symbol ® (often seen in superscript like this: ®) is used to provide notice to the public that a trademark or service mark is registered. In most jurisdictions, the ® may be used only after registration of the mark is granted. In many jurisdictions, use of ® with an unregistered mark is a civil or criminal offense.

    What does the R mean in a brand logo? ›

    What does the R (®) symbol mean? The R (®) symbol on a product indicates that it is a registered trademark. This means that the logo enjoys legal protection as per the Trademarks Act, 1999.

    Can I use R symbol in my logo? ›

    The ® symbol stands for registered. It can only be used on registered trade marks under the Trade Marks Act 1995.

    What does the little TM in a circle mean? ›

    What does the trademark symbol (™) mean? A trademark is a name, symbol, or mark that distinguishes a product or brand from other products or brands.

    What is the meaning of R and TM in logo? ›

    Many people use ™ and r symbols synonymly but there are some key differences between both. 1. Usage. The TM symbol is typically used during the trademark application process for registering a specific product or service. While the ® symbol can only be used after a trademark has been successfully registered.

    What does TM mean in a logo? ›

    TM symbol meaning. TM stands for trademark. Trademarks are marks used with goods, such as cell phones, clothing, software, and juice. The letters TM mean that a name, word, logo, or phrase is an unregistered trademark, which means that it is not registered with the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office.

    Does TM or R come first? ›

    Using TM with a registered trademark is our first scenario and legal use. It is not permitted to use a circle R with an unregistered mark. Secondly, the TM symbol is their best choice when the brand owner has a pending trademark application.

    What is the TM RC symbol? ›

    For all this time, the applicant can use the TM Symbol (™) with his brand name which means that the applicant claims his right over the mark but the application is still pending. Once all processes get finished, he can use the R Copyright Symbol (®) with his brand name.

    What does TM mean in texting? ›

    Text Message. First Definition for TMTM means "Text Message." This is the most common definition for TM on Snapchat, WhatsApp, Facebook, and Twitter. TM. Definition: Text Message.

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