A likelihood of confusion refusal (also known as a 2(d) refusal) is based on the trademark examining attorney arguing that an applied for trademark is likely to cause consumer confusion with respect to a prior-registered trademark.
A trademark that is likely to cause consumer confusion with another registered mark, is not entitled to registration. Receiving an initial likelihood of confusion refusal, however, does not always mean that there is no path to registration. Applicants can respond to a likelihood of confusion refusal and argue why confusion is not likely. Certain refusals are more difficult to overcome than others. If you need assistance responding to a likelihood of confusion refusal, fill out our Office Action intake form.
Note that a likelihood of confusion “advisory” notice may be issued when the trademark examining attorney believes that another pending trademark application could be the basis of a likelihood of confusion refusal if the prior-filed application actually registers.