Due to the growing awareness about the importance of the Trademark registration nowadays there are various Applicants who often approach us asking us the difference between the symbol ™ and ® and the Time when they can be used. Through this post we attempt to show you the basic difference between the 2 symbols and when they can be used?
Trademark(™)– This symbol can be put beside the trademarks of any company or the brand name which any person intent to protect or claim the monopoly rights over the same after the application for the trademark registration has been filed with the trademark registry. Or in other words we can say that it is used to indicate that the trademark is unregistered but this mark is used for promoting the goods.
Therefore, the symbol ™ is used for the marks for which registration is not applied. But remember any person who has not applied for the trademark registration and using the symbol ™, in case of the infringement of the Mark will only get the remedy under the common law and not under the Trademarks Act, 1999.
Registered (®)– When the application is made by the person is accepted by the trademark Registry and the trademark has granted the Registration Certificate, than the person can replace the TM symbol with the (®) symbol. Therefore, symbol ® is used to represent a registered trademark that provides the applicant complete ownership, monopoly rights and legal rights over the trademark.
Using ® on an unregistered mark is an offence in India under Section 107 of Trade Marks Act, 1999 and punishable with imprisonment for a term which may extend to three years, or with fine, or with both as misusing of the symbol is understood more specifically as misleading Advertisement.
Hence, in a simple language it can be said that it is not necessary for a person to have applied for or obtain registration for using the symbol ™. Whereas it is essential to secure registration of the mark to use the symbol ®.