The Complainant is Deutsche Leasing AG, of Germany, represented by Danckelmann u. Kerst Rechtsanwälte, Germany.
The Respondent is John Mosai of the United States of America.
The disputed domain name <deutsch-leasing.com> is registered with PSI-USA, Inc. dba Domain Robot.
The Complaint was filed with the WIPO Arbitration and Mediation Center (the “Center“) on September 3, 2009. On September 4, 2009, the Center transmitted by email to PSI-USA, Inc. dba Domain Robot a request for registrar verification in connection with the disputed domain name. On September 8, 2009, PSI-USA, Inc. dba Domain Robot transmitted by email to the Center its verification response confirming that the Respondent is listed as the registrant and providing the contact details. The Center verified that the Complaint satisfied the formal requirements of the Uniform Domain Name Dispute Resolution Policy (the “Policy“ or “UDRP“), 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 17, 2009. In accordance with the Rules, paragraph 5(a), the due date for Response was October 7, 2009. The Respondent did not submit any response. Accordingly, the Center notified the Respondent's default on October 22, 2009.
The Center appointed Stefan Naumann as the sole panelist in this matter on October 23, 2009. 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 Deutsche Leasing AG presents itself as the largest independent Leasing company in Germany that provides leasing and financial services in nineteen countries.
The evidence submitted by the Complainant shows that it owns trademarks that include the terms “Deutsche Leasing“ in combination with a logo for services in international class 36 amongst others, specifically a German trademark 3 030 96 40.3, a European Community trademark 2 168 110 and an international trademark 821 738 that designates various countries including the United States and Canada.
Complainant has submitted data base printouts for the three foregoing trademarks.
Complainant contends that the disputed domain name <deutsch-leasing.com> is nearly identical to its trademarks except for the missing “e“ at the end of the first word “Deutsch“ and, implicitly, the absence of the logo.
Complainant alleges that Respondent has no legitimate interest in the domain name <deutsch-leasing.com> on the basis that Respondent does not have any registered trademarks or trade names corresponding to the domain name, as shown by the search results of the data bases of the USPTO, WIPO and the German trademark registry, that there is no evidence that Respondent has been commonly known under this domain name, that Respondent is using the domain name as a parking page for pay-per-click links to websites that compete with Complainant‘s leasing and financial services, that Respondent uses the similarity to the domain name of Complainant‘s own website “www.deutsche-leasing.com“ to divert consumers, and that the litigious domain name provides advertising links exclusively to the websites of German companies.
Complainant argues that bad faith use and registration of the domain name are demonstrated by Respondent‘s registration of 37 other domain names that are similar to the names of other German companies and their websites, from which they differ only by a typing mistake.
Complainant has provided screenshots of the websites that support this allegation.
Last, Complainant alleges and shows that Respondent is offering the litigious domain name for sale.
Respondent did not reply to Complainant's contentions.
In the present matter, Respondent omitted the letter “e“ from the terms “deutsche-leasing“, which were filed as trademarks.
In addition, the evidence shows that Respondent is engaged in a practice known as typo-squatting targeting German company names.
The Panel considers that the website using the litigious domain name has the effect of and/or is intended to create a risk of confusion.
The Panel therefore finds that the domain name <deutsch-leasing.com> is confusingly similar to Complainant‘s trademarks.
Respondent has chosen not to contest Complainant‘s allegations.
The Panel has found no indication in the evidence it received that any of the circumstances described in the Policy, paragraph 4 (c) (i) – (iii) could apply in the present matter, nor has Respondent claimed or demonstrated any other circumstances that could demonstrate his rights to or legitimate interest in the litigious domain name.
The Panel therefore finds that Respondents has no rights or legitimate interest in the domain name <deutsch-leasing.com>.
For Complainant to prevail, the Panel must be persuaded that the domain name at issue was both registered and used in bad faith.
In the present matter, Respondent registered the terms <deutsch-leasing.com> as domain name in bad faith insofar as he has not shown any right or legitimate interest in these terms, and was or should have been aware of Complainant‘s prior rights in the terms “Deutsche Leasing“ as they were registered as trademarks in the United States.
This view is supported by the fact that Respondent operates a website under the litigious domain name that provides advertisements and links to German companies offering competing financial services.
The Panel finds that this use shows that Respondent was aware of the business activities of the Complainant when he registered and used the litigious domain name.
In addition, Respondent has a track record of registering the names of German companies with typographical errors.
Engaging in a pattern of registering infringing domain names can be indicative of bad faith use pursuant to paragraph 4 (b) (ii) of the Policy.
In the present matter, the Panel therefore finds that the domain name was both registered and used in bad faith.
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 <deutsch-leasing.com>, be transferred to the Complainant.
Dated: November 6, 2009