The Complainant is Kaehler Travelworks, LLC, Wheeling, Illinois, United States of America, represented by Law Offices of Eric S. Freibrun, Ltd., United States of America.
The Respondent is Texas International Property Associates - NA NA, Dallas, Texas, United States of America, represented by Law Office of Gary Wayne Tucker, United States of America.
The disputed domain name <kaehlerluggage.com> is registered with Compana LLC.
The Complaint was filed with the WIPO Arbitration and Mediation Center (the “Center”) on August 29, 2008. On September 2, 2008, the Center transmitted by email to Compana LLC a request for registrar verification in connection with the disputed domain name. On September 3, 2008, Compana LLC transmitted by email to the Center its verification response confirming that the Respondent is listed as the registrant and providing the contact details. In response to a notification by the Center that the Complaint was administratively deficient, the Complainant filed an amendment to the Complaint on September 29, 2008. The Center verified that the Complaint together with the amendment to the Complaint satisfied the formal requirements of the Uniform Domain Name Dispute Resolution Policy (the “Policy”), the Rules for Uniform Domain Name Dispute Resolution Policy (the “Rules”), and the WIPO Supplemental Rules for Uniform Domain Name Dispute Resolution Policy (the “Supplemental Rules”).
In accordance with the Rules, paragraphs 2(a) and 4(a), the Center formally notified the Respondent of the Complaint, and the proceedings commenced on September 30, 2008. In accordance with the Rules, paragraph 5(a), the due date for Response was October 20, 2008. The Response was filed with the Center on October 20, 2008.
The Center appointed Kevin C. Trock as the sole panelist in this matter on November 4, 2008. The Panel finds that it was properly constituted. The Panel has submitted the Statement of Acceptance and Declaration of Impartiality and Independence, as required by the Center to ensure compliance with the Rules, paragraph 7.
The Complainant owns three trademark registrations and two pending applications in the
U.S. Patent and Trademark Office for various combinations of the KAEHLER mark. The U.S. trademark registrations include Nos. 1613848; 1607939; and 3372529.
The Respondent registered the disputed domain name on March 19, 2005. The Respondent agrees to transfer the disputed domain name to the Complainant.
The Complainant Kaehler Travelworks, LLC is a full-service online and physical store retailer selling luggage and travel-related goods and accessories. The Complainant is headquartered in the U.S., with eleven physical store locations in Illinois, two in Missouri and one in Wisconsin. The Complainant conducts a significant and growing portion of its business through its web site at “www.worldtraveler.com” under its “KAEHLER world traveler” brand.
The Respondent has no rights or legitimate interests in respect of the disputed domain name.
There is no evidence that the Respondent has made any serious preparations to use the disputed domain name for a bona fide offering of goods and services.
The Respondent's only use of the domain name is to illegitimately divert to its own web site those persons who might seek to locate the Complainant's web site by typing or searching for a domain name containing the Complainant's KAEHLER mark.
There is no evidence that the Respondent has been, or is, commonly known by the disputed domain name or service mark KAEHLER. The Complainant, however, is commonly known by such name and service mark.
The Respondent agrees to the relief requested by the Complainant and will, upon order of the Panel, do so. The Respondent claims that this is not an admission to the three elements of 4(a) of the policy, but rather an offer of a unilateral consent to transfer.
A number of panel decisions have considered the proper course where a respondent has unilaterally consented to transfer a disputed domain name to a complainant. There have been at least three courses proposed: (i) to grant the relief requested by the complainant on the basis of the respondent's consent without reviewing the facts supporting the claim (see Williams-Sonoma, Inc. v. EZ-Port, WIPO Case No. D2000-0207; Slumberland France v. Chadia Acohuri, WIPO Case No. D2000-0195); (ii) to find that consent to transfer means that the three elements of paragraph 4(a) are deemed to be satisfied, and therefore transfer should be ordered on this basis (Qosina Corporation v. Qosmedix Group, WIPO Case No. D2003-0620; DESOTEC N.V. v. JACOBI CARBONS AB, WIPO Case No. D2000-1398); and (iii) to proceed to consider whether on the evidence the three elements of paragraph 4(a) are satisfied because the respondent's offer to transfer is not an admission of the complainant's right (Koninklijke Philips Electronics N.V. v. Manageware, WIPO Case No. D2001-0796) or because there is some reason to doubt the genuineness of the respondent's consent (Société Française du Radiotéléphone-SFR v. Karen, WIPO Case No. D2004-0386; Eurobet UK Limited v. Grand Slam Co, WIPO Case No. D2003-0745).
There is a difference between a unilateral consent to transfer and an admission of the elements of paragraph 4(a) of the Policy. A respondent might consent to transfer in circumstances where bad faith would be strongly denied (for example, where a domain name was registered in error). Accordingly, this Panel does not deem proven the three elements of paragraph 4(a) of the Policy based on a consent to transfer.
However, this Panel considers that a genuine unilateral consent to transfer by the Respondent provides a basis for an immediate order for transfer without consideration of the paragraph 4(a) elements. Where the Complainant has sought transfer of a disputed domain name, and the Respondent consents to transfer, then pursuant to paragraph 10 of the Rules, the Panel can proceed immediately to make an order for transfer. This is clearly the most expeditious course (see Williams-Sonoma, Inc. v. EZ-Port, WIPO Case No. D2000-0207).
For all the foregoing reasons, in accordance with Paragraphs 4(i) of the Policy and 15 of the Rules, the Panel orders that the domain name <kaehlerluggage.com> be transferred to the Complainant.
Kevin C. Trock
Dated: November 13, 2008