Daily Archives: October 21, 2008

When can I use TM, SM, or ® with my trademark, servicemark or business name?

Actually, you can use (TM) to designate trademark or (SM) to designate servicemark any time you want to alert the public to your rights in a particular mark or business name.  You do not need to have an application filed with the USPTO to use TM or SM after your mark or business name. 

However, to use ® with your mark or business name you have to register your mark on the Federal Trademark register. Thus, using ® with your mark or business name without first registering your mark or business name can be false and/or misleading. 

 Therefore, if you have used a mark or business name with common law rights, then you should use SM or TM with it, to let others know of your rights.  This can help provide some notice of your rights to a mark or business name without having to file an application with the USPTO.