WIPO Arbitration and Mediation Center

ADMINISTRATIVE PANEL DECISION

ZB, N.A dba Zions First National Bank. v. Tony Zuazo

Case No. D2017-0802

1. The Parties

Complainant is ZB, N.A dba Zions First National Bank of Salt Lake City, Utah, United States of America (“US”) , represented by TechLaw Ventures, PLLC, US.

Respondent is Tony Zuazo of Cleveland, Ohio, US.

2. The Domain Name and Registrar

The disputed domain name <zionsbancorps.com> is registered with PDR Ltd. d/b/a PublicDomainRegistry.com (the “Registrar”).

3. Procedural History

The Complaint was filed with the WIPO Arbitration and Mediation Center (the “Center”) on April 20, 2017. On April 21, 2017, the Center transmitted by email to the Registrar a request for registrar verification in connection with the disputed domain name. On April 22, 2017, the Registrar transmitted by email to the Center its verification response confirming that 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 and 4, the Center formally notified Respondent of the Complaint, and the proceedings commenced on April 26, 2017. In accordance with the Rules, paragraph 5, the due date for Response was May 16, 2017. Respondent did not submit any response. Accordingly, the Center notified Respondent’s default on May 23, 2017.

The Center appointed Lynda J. Zadra-Symes as the sole panelist in this matter on June 2, 2017. 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.

4. Factual Background

Complainant is a national banking association in the US.

Complainant is the owner of the following trademarks registered with the US Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO):

ZIONS BANK

registration no. 2,381,006

registered August 29, 2000, first use 1992

ZIONSBANK.COM

registration no. 2,531,436

registered January 22, 2002, first use 1995

ZIONS

registration no. 2,380,325

registered August 29, 2000, first use 1891

Respondent is an individual residing in Cleveland, Ohio, US. The disputed domain name was registered on July 18, 2016. At the time the Complaint was filed the disputed domain name was inactive resolving to a page: “Unknown host”.

5. Parties’ Contentions

A. Complainant

Complainant contends that the disputed domain name is identical or confusingly similar to Complainant’s trademark, that Respondent has no rights or legitimate interests in respect of the disputed domain name and that the disputed domain name was registered and is being used in bad faith.

B. Respondent

The Respondent did not reply to the Complainant’s contentions.

6. Discussion and Findings

Complainant has the burden of proving each of the following three elements under paragraph 4(a) of the Policy in order to be entitled to a transfer of the disputed domain name:

(i) That the disputed domain name is identical or confusingly similar to a trademark or service mark in which Complainant has rights; and

(ii) That Respondent has no rights or legitimate interests in respect of the disputed domain name; and

(iii) That the disputed domain name has been registered and is being used in bad faith.

A. Identical or Confusingly Similar

Complainant has established registered trademark rights in the terms ZIONS BANK, ZIONS and ZIONSBANK.COM. The disputed domain name incorporates the mark ZIONS in its entirety, and an alternative spelling of the mark ZION BANK.

The Panel finds that the disputed domain name is confusingly similar to Complainant’s trademarks.

B. Rights or Legitimate Interests

Based on previous UDRP decisions, “a complainant is required to make out a prima facie case that the respondent lacks rights or legitimate interests. Once such a prima facie case is made, the burden of production shifts to the respondent to come forward with appropriate allegations or evidence demonstrating rights or legitimate interests in the domain name. If the respondent fails to come forward with such appropriate allegations or evidence, a complainant is generally deemed to have satisfied paragraph 4(a)(ii) of the UDRP”. See WIPO Overview 3.0 of WIPO Panel Views on Selected UDRP Questions, Third Edition (“WIPO Overview 3.0”), section 2.1.

Complainant’s allegations in the Complaint and evidence submitted on this issue are sufficient to make out a prima facie case that Respondent has no rights or legitimate interests in the disputed domain name.

Respondent has not made use of the disputed domain name in connection with a bona fide offering of goods or services. There is no evidence that Respondent has been commonly known by the disputed domain name. Respondent is not a licensee of Complainant’s trademarks and has not otherwise obtained authorization to use Complainant’s marks.

The Panel finds that Respondent has no rights or legitimate interests in respect of the disputed domain name.

C. Registered and Used in Bad Faith

Paragraph 4(b) of the Policy lists a number of circumstances that, without limitation, are deemed to be evidence of registration and use of a domain name in bad faith. Circumstances that “shall be evidence” of bad faith include facts indicating an intentional attempt to attract for commercial gain Internet users to a website by creating a likelihood of confusion with another’s mark as to the source, sponsorship, affiliation, or endorsement of the website.

The virtually identical nature of the disputed domain name to Complainant’s marks indicates that the disputed domain name was registered primarily for the purpose of disrupting the business of Complainant, and intended to take advantage of the goodwill associated with Complainant’s registered trademarks by creating a likelihood of confusion with Complainant’s mark as to the source, sponsorship, affiliation, or endorsement of Respondent’s website at the disputed domain name. This may particularly be so given that Complainant operates as a financial institution. In view of Complainant’s registered trademarks and longstanding use of the marks incorporated in the disputed domain name, and given that Complainant’s parent company is Zions Bancorporation, the Panel finds that Respondent knew about Complainant’s marks and its related entities at the time it registered the disputed domain name. In addition, Complainant’s parent company is ZIONS BANCORPORATION, and the term “bancorps” is an abbreviation of “bancorporation.”

The Panel finds that the disputed domain names has been registered and is being used in bad faith.

7. Decision

For the foregoing reasons, in accordance with paragraphs 4(i) of the Policy and 15 of the Rules, the Panel orders that the disputed domain name, <zionsbancorps.com> be transferred to the Complainant.

Lynda J. Zadra-Symes
Sole Panelist
Date: June 22, 2017