Coastal News

October 23, 2013

Coastal Trademark Opens Satellite Office!

Coastal Trademark Opens Satellite Office!

Coastal Trademark Services is proud to announce that we have recently opened a satellite office in British Columbia’s beautiful Okanagan region, in the city of Kelowna.

Our head office, which will remain in Vancouver, has been earning the trust and respect of some of North America’s leading law firms and companies in industries such as manufacturing, pharmaceuticals, and technology. We will now be positioned to service our expanding portfolio of Okanagan clients including law firms, retail and, of course – wineries! Kelowna is one of Canada’s fastest growing cities and Coastal Trademark Services looks forward to providing our interior clients with the same personalized, efficient, and cost-effective approach to service as we have for our clients on the coast for over 25 years.

As owner of Coastal Trademark Services, I will be travelling between the Vancouver and Kelowna offices, following my passion for trademarks and dedication to high quality service. To grow, every company must innovate, respond to market demands, and be consistent in their service levels. We remain committed to providing you with strategic and practical solutions for your trademark needs.
We wish to extend our thanks for your continued support throughout these years. We are really proud to be part of your success stories and business growth. If you know of any law firms or companies in the Okanagan who would benefit from our personalized trademark expertise, please feel free to let us know. We appreciate the opportunity to grow our community of like-minded professional companies.
Warm regards,
Tanya Reitzel

July 27, 2013

Proper Trademark Usage – Part 1

What Those Trademark Symbols Mean and When to Use Them

Marking: What Those Symbols Mean and When to Use Them

Trademark marking refers to the use of symbols or other designations to indicate trademark rights. We have all seen symbols such as ™ and ® on products and advertising, but what is not always clear is the distinctions between them, and when they should and should not be used.

1) Types of Designations

The following are examples of symbols often seen in Canada:

Symbol   Meaning
TM   Trademark
MC   Marque de commerce
SM   Service Mark
®   Registered Trademark
MD   Marque Déposée


  • TM (Trademark)

May refer to a registered or unregistered trademark, whether or not an application has been filed.

  • MC (Marque de commerce)

French language equivalent of the ™ symbol. Commonly used in Québec.  May refer to a registered or unregistered trademark, whether or not an application has been filed.

For packaging and advertising that is used in English and French speaking markets, it is not uncommon to see both English and French symbols, e.g. ABCTM/MC

  •  SM (Service Mark)

More common in the United States.  May refer to a registered or unregistered trademark used with services, whether or not an application has been filed. 

  •  ®  (Registered Trademark)

 Should only be used after a mark has registered, and only in relation to goods and services covered by the registration.

  •  MD (Marque Déposée)

French language equivalent of the ® symbol.  Commonly used in Québec. Should only be used after a mark has registered, and only in relation to goods and services covered by the registration.

The above symbols should appear immediately following the trademark.  Trademark rights can also be designated in footnotes or ownership legends, e.g.

 ABC is a registered trademark of ABC Inc.

This is often preferred when the above symbols would be considered cumbersome or aesthetically displeasing.

2) What are the Canadian Requirements With Respect to Trademark Marking?

Simply put, the use of trademark symbols is not compulsory in Canada. The Trade-marks Act does not contain any requirements with respect to trademark marking. There is currently no legal obligation to use the above symbols, nor any legal repercussions for misusing them in Canada. That said, the above-mentioned trademark symbols are widely recognized in practice in Canada, and making proper use of them is advisable, for the reasons stated below.

3) Purpose of Trademark Marking

• Alerts the public to your trademark rights – puts third parties who may be considering adopting the same or similar marks on notice. In addition to serving as a deterrent to potential infringers, this public notice will, in some countries, entitle the mark owner to additional remedies in litigation.

Shows that mark is not being used generically

• Set trademark content apart from surrounding text or graphic elements – This is useful when a mark is used in close proximity to other elements, to clearly identify the subject matter covered by a trademark.

4) International Considerations

Although Canada has no marking requirements, brand owners who do business in other countries need to be aware that marking laws will vary by country.

Some countries require that trademarks be properly identified as registered in order to be entitled to certain legal remedies. For example, in the United States, failure to give notice of the registered status of a trademark may limit the ability to recover damages and profits in an infringement suit.

Further, in some countries, false or misleading marking can result in claims of unfair competition, fines, and even imprisonment.

In the United States, improper use of the federal registration symbol ® that is deliberate and intended to deceive or mislead the public is fraud (TMEP §906.04). Thus, if a business is using the same marketing collateral in both Canada and the United States, but only has a trademark registered in Canada, the safest approach is to use the ™ symbol until such time as the mark has registered in the United States.

Although the ® is commonly used around the world, other symbols may be more appropriate in certain regions. For example, M.R. (“Marca Registrada”) is used in many Spanish and Portuguese speaking nations.

Because of these international differences, advertising and packaging may need to be customized to comply with local marking requirements. Since websites may be accessed from anywhere in the world, it may be advisable to have regional websites with a marking strategy tailored for each country.

It is best to consult with your Trademark Agent if you have questions concerning marking requirements in specific countries.

December 19, 2012

Coastal Trademark is on the Move!

Coastal Trademark Services is on the Move to Yaletown (Effective January 2nd)

Coastal Trademark Services is excited to announce that we will be kicking off the New Year in new office space! We are currently busy redesigning our space and will be pleased to welcome you to our Yaletown office effective January 2nd, 2013.

Please take a moment and update your address books:

Coastal Trademark Services
1081 Cambie Street
Vancouver, BC  V6B 5L7

Phone, fax and emails will all remain the same.

Ho..Ho..Ho..Holiday Wishes

We would like to take this opportunity to thank you for your support in 2012 and wish you and your loved ones every happiness this holiday season and throughout the coming year.

Coastal Trademark Holiday Hours:

Please note, although our office will be closed over the holidays (from December 24th at noon through to January 2nd), in case an urgent matter arises, Tanya and Jenn will be monitoring emails during our closure.  Please feel free to contact them by email. Warm regards, Tanya, Penny, Deanna, Jenn, Anna, Robyn, Kristy and Ana

November 9, 2012

Coastal Trademark Announces New Trademark Agent

Jennifer Dove

Coastal Trademark Services is pleased to announce the addition of Jennifer Dove to our team. Jennifer joins Coastal as a registered Trademark Agent, bringing with her over nine years of experience in the intellectual property field. Jennifer has been involved with all aspects of the trademark process, including clearance opinions, filing, prosecution, opposition, and expungement.

Prior to joining Coastal, Jennifer worked for a national intellectual property law firm. She has a Bachelor of Arts in criminology and psychology from Simon Fraser University, and a Paralegal Diploma from Capilano University.  

The addition of Jennifer further strengthens our ability to provide exceptional service to our clients. Please join us in welcoming her to our team!


March 26, 2012

New website and design!

Coastal Trademark Services is happy to announce the launch our new website. We hope you like our new look and added features. Design credit goes to Creating Excellence – Online Marketing, Branding, and Social Media and website programming to Vancouver web designer Blender Design. Let us know what you think