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Difference Between TM and R Symbol in Trademark (Key Points)

difference between tm and r

What is the difference between TM and R symbol in trademark? What is the meaning of each symbol and why does it matter? In this post we will know about the key differences between these two symbols.

Trademarks are examples of intellectual property that give the owner the sole right to use their mark or grant the owner’s authorization to another person or entity to use their mark for reasonable compensation. The symbol in superscript is the trademark, which can also be a signature, symbol, logo, design, etc. There are two types of trademark symbols: Trademark ™ and Registered trademark symbol ®.

Daily, we all come across the trademark symbols ™ and ®. Some people prefer to believe that both are saying the same thing. Nonetheless, there is a big difference between TM and R symbol as the first one is registered trademark symbol ® and another is trademark symbol ™.  

Each stands for a particular form of trademark, with ® denoting a registered trademark and ™ denoting an unregistered one. The mark has no prescribed placement; however, it is typically placed in the top-right or bottom-right corners.

What is the meaning of the ™ symbol?

Individuals or companies can typically use the ™ mark to indicate that a specific term, phrase, or logo is intended to act as source identification for that product or service. Registering a trademark to utilize it is not required, and many businesses choose to do so before and during the registration process for new products or services.

The ™ symbol is not required to be used next to your trademark name or logo because it has no legal meaning. The Trademark Act of 1999 permits usage until the applied trademark is not registered. Anyone can use the trademark sign by creating a unique product and releasing it onto the market.

What is the meaning of the R symbol?

By adding the ® symbol to your brand name or logo, you can proudly display your trademark registration to the globe. The trademark owner is authorized to use the ® mark next to the trademark once registered, per the requirements outlined in the trademark legislation of 1999.  

This ® emblem serves as a reminder that the brand is registered and protected from trademark law violation. Therefore, by applying, the trademark application does not automatically get permission to use the ™ symbol. The trademark has a ten-year expiration date and is renewable.

Difference between TM and R symbol

Here we will know the difference between TM and R symbol in detail and compare both symbols on various parameters.


  • Upon completing the trademark registration, one may utilize the ® symbol.
  • The ™ symbol may be used when the specific good or service has a trademark application pending registration. The ® symbol cannot be used in this situation since the mark has not yet been approved.
  • The TM mark is acceptable everywhere. Nevertheless, you can only use the ® symbol in countries where you have legally registered your trademark.


  • There is no legal benefit or support for the ™ trademark symbol.
  • If someone copies the ® mark, it is illegal and penalized.

Branding Purpose

  • The ™ mark is typically used as a preference for a particular business, organization, or person’s brand identity while awaiting the process’s outcome.
  • By using the ® symbol to promote your goods or services, you’ll have the assurance to exploit your intellectual property to create substantial brand equity.


  • When the trademark registration time expires, renewing it for another ten years is possible.
  • The owner has to demonstrate how long the reputation of the goods or services has existed in the market.


  • Registered trademarks are respected and safeguarded across the nation. Thus, a trademark owner can ban anyone from utilizing his mark nationwide.
  • Unregistered trademarks are only protected in a narrow or particular field where they have developed a reputation.


We hope now you are understand the difference between TM and R symbol for trademark. Both symbols have have their own significance and importance.

The use of trademark symbols can boost brand recognition and economic success. Yet, selecting the right sign for a particular situation might be challenging. Many individuals mistakenly think that the symbols ™ and ® can be used interchangeably because they are both used to represent intellectual property rights.

The trademark symbol ™ restricts infringers by indicating that registration for a given trademark is already in progress. A trademark featuring the ® sign has been registered with the Indian Trademarks Registry.

Every few years, depending on the rules of the trademark office where it is registered, a product’s name and logo must have their registration renewed to ensure that they continue to be protected as registered trademarks. 

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