As electure stated, I've never heard of any regulation, even on the county or city level, making a distinction between these products.
Traditionally, you would use a more robust product in a commercial environment due to long hours of operation, harsher environments, etc. On the other hand, residential usually denotes a stricter budget. These are design and $$ considerations, not parameters designated by any orginization or AHJ that I'm aware of.
Re: Residential vs. Commercial Recessed Cans
#178574 06/05/0809:57 AM06/05/0809:57 AM
Other than the fact that commercial renovations are generally 100% tax deductible I never understood why you would use a more expensive luminaire in a commercial setting like a strip mall. In a residence people are more likely to actually look at it and most of these strip malls get gutted and rebuilt every 4 or 5 years around here. I am sure most of the space they are building right now will not last 5 years. This looks like the 80s to me where we built several million square feet of commercial in a couple years and never actually rented more than 75% of it.