The trademark filing for this mark was an Intent to Use application and was filed for the description “Annuity underwriting; Issuance and administration of annuities”. The trademark application for “RETIREMENT CORNERSTONE SERIES XC” was under the International class 036.
However, the USPTO after a preliminary trademark search of its databases, refused to register the mark on the basis of likelihood of confusion. This ground of refusal is cited under Trademarks Act Section 2(d) that bars registration of an applied-for mark which so resembles a registered mark that it is likely that a potential consumer would be confused or mistaken or deceived as to the source of the services of the applicant and registrant.
The most often cited case by the Trademark Office in such refusals, is that of In re E. I. du Pont de Nemours & Co., 476 F.2d 1357, 177 USPQ 563 (C.C.P.A. 1973) which listed the principal factors to be considered when determining whether there is a likelihood of confusion under Section 2(d).
Primarily these factors would be the most relevant, similarity of the marks, similarity of the services, and similarity of trade channels of the goods and/or services.