Can I use ®™© symbols without registering?

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Can I use ®™© symbols without registering?

Also, does a DBA under a LLC have to say LLC after it’s name?

Asked on March 4, 2011 under Business Law, Minnesota

Answers:

MD, Member, California Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 10 years ago | Contributor

Simply put, the symbols are based on federal law and federal registration. The first two stand for registered trademark and the third one is copyright. You must register with the appropriate federal agency to ensure your product is legally covered. While you can put them on, you may only be relegated to state protection, which is very little. If you place those items on products and it turns out someone already has the copyright or trademark on a same or similar product, you may run into some legal issues, like being sued. DBA's are the name that the business uses in that state or location or if it is a separate type of business than the parent company. While you are free to use a name as a dba, without the use of llc, make sure you have registered this trade name with your secretary of state because again, if someone else has it, you cannot use it.


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