Source： LIAONING BANDCN LAW FIRM
written by : Fangfang Wang
The sign of TM or ®(hereinafter R) can ofen be seen on the left of the trademark, but the legal
meaning of two signs are different.
The letter TM is the abbreviation of trademark, while the letter R is the abbreviation of register.
The sign TM is just want to tell people that the letter or picture with TM is trademark of the product,
different from other letters or pictures of the product.
While R is to tell people, not only that the letter or picture with TM is trademark of the product, different
from other letters or pictures of the product, but also that the letter or picuture with R has been
approved and registered in State Trademark Office, that is to say, the owner of the trademark has the
exclusive right to use this trademark.
The signTM comes from the United States. In the United States, people are allowed to use TM to
distinguish the letters or pictures of the product as their trademark. However, in China, there are no
regulations or laws to define the meaning of the sign of TM. With the growing importing products, the
meaning of TM , to distinuish the trademark, has been known by businessmen, and some domestic
companies has tried to use it.
But R are explicitly regulated in the Trademark Law in China, according to the law, only the trademark
which has been approve and registered in the State Trademark Office can be marked with R.
In a word, in China, all the trademarks including registered or non-registered can be marked with TM, but
only the trademark registered in the State Trademark Office can be marked with R. Only the owner of
trademark with R is entitled to execute the exclusive right to use this trademark, that's to say, any
person using the registered trademark without consent from the owner of trademark with R can be sued