WIPO Arbitration and Mediation Center
ADMINISTRATIVE PANEL DECISION
Jones Lang LaSalle IP, Inc. v. James
Case No. D2019-0677
1. The Parties
The Complainant is Jones Lang LaSalle IP, Inc., United States of America (“United States”), represented by CSC Digital Brand Services AB, Sweden.
The Respondent is James, United States.
2. The Domain Name and Registrar
The disputed domain name <eu-jll.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 March 26, 2019. On March 26, 2019, the Center transmitted by email to the Registrar a request for registrar verification in connection with the disputed domain name. On March 27, 2019, the Registrar transmitted by email to the Center its verification response confirming that the Respondent is listed as the registrant and providing the contact details. The Complainant submitted an amended Complaint on April 9, 2019.
The Center verified that the Complaint together with the amended 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 the Respondent of the Complaint, and the proceedings commenced on April 11, 2019. In accordance with the Rules, paragraph 5, the due date for Response was May 1, 2019. The Respondent did not submit any response. Accordingly, the Center notified the Respondent’s default on May 6, 2019.
The Center appointed Evan D. Brown as the sole panelist in this matter on May 14, 2019. 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
The Complainant is a professional services and investment management firm specializing in real estate. It owns a number of trademark registrations for the mark JLL, including United States Reg. Nos. 4,564,654 and 4,709,457, issued on July 8, 2014 and March 24, 2015, respectively, and European Union Trade Mark Reg. No. 010603447, issued on August 31, 2012. The Complainant’s brand is well recognized and respected worldwide in its industry, and the Complainant has made significant investment to advertise and promote its services worldwide in media and the Internet over the years.
The disputed domain name was registered on July 30, 2018. The Respondent has been using the disputed domain name to redirect internet users to a website that resolves to a blank page and lacks content. There is evidence that Respondent engages in a pattern of registering domain names that incorporate the trademarks of well-known brands and businesses.
5. Parties’ Contentions
The Complainant contends that the disputed domain name is identical or confusingly similar to the Complainant’s registered trademark; that the 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.
The Respondent did not reply to the Complainant’s contentions.
6. Discussion and Findings
According to paragraph 4(a) of the Policy, for this Complaint to succeed in relation to the disputed domain name, the Complainant must prove each of the following, namely, that:
(i) The disputed domain name is identical or confusingly similar to a trademark or service mark in which the Complainant has rights; and
(ii) The Respondent has no rights or legitimate interests in respect of the disputed domain name; and
(iii) The disputed domain name has been registered and is being used in bad faith.
A. Identical or Confusingly Similar
The Complainant undoubtedly has rights in the mark JLL. The mark is associated with a well-known real estate company, having been registered and in widespread use prior to the registration of the disputed domain name.
As to whether the disputed domain name is identical or confusingly similar to the JLL trademark, the relevant comparison to be made is with the second-level portion of the disputed domain name only (i.e., “eu-jll”) because “[t]he applicable Top Level Domain (‘TLD’) in a domain name (e.g., ‘.com’, ‘.club’, ‘.nyc’) is viewed as a standard registration requirement and as such is disregarded under the first element confusing similarity test.” WIPO Overview of WIPO Panel Views on Selected UDRP Questions, Third Edition (“WIPO Overview 3.0”), section 1.11.1.
The disputed domain name contains the JLL trademark in its entirety and simply adds the term “eu”. As stated in WIPO Overview 3.0, section 1.7, “in cases where a domain name incorporates the entirety of a trademark, or where at least a dominant feature of the relevant mark is recognizable in the domain name, the domain name will normally be considered confusingly similar to that mark for purposes of UDRP standing”. Further, “the addition of other terms (whether descriptive, geographical, pejorative, meaningless, or otherwise) would not prevent a finding of confusing similarity under the first element.” WIPO Overview 3.0, section 1.8. Here, the addition of “eu” does not avoid confusing similarity between the disputed domain name and the Complainant’s trademark, which is clearly recognizable in the disputed domain name.
B. Rights or Legitimate Interests
The Complainant will be successful under this element of the Policy if it makes a prima facie showing that the Respondent lacks rights or legitimate interests in the disputed domain name, and if that prima facie showing remains unrebutted by the Respondent. The Complainant asserts, among other things, that (1) the Respondent is not sponsored by or affiliated with the Complainant in any way; (2) the Complainant has not given the Respondent permission to use the Complainant’s trademarks in any manner, including in domain names, and has not licensed, authorized, or permitted the Respondent to register domain names incorporating Complainant’s trademark; and (3) the Respondent is not commonly known by the disputed domain name. These assertions establish the Complainant’s prima facie case. The Respondent has not answered the Complainant’s assertions, and, seeing no basis in the record to overcome the Complainant’s prima facie showing, the Panel finds that the Complainant has satisfied this second Policy element.
C. Registered and Used in Bad Faith
Because the Complainant’s mark JLL is well known, it is implausible to believe that the Respondent was not aware of that mark when it registered the disputed domain name. The Complainant has provided evidence that an email address associated with the registration of the disputed domain name has been used to register domain names – presumably without authorization – incorporating other companies’ trademarks and brand names (including, for example, VMWare, PowerSoft, Reinhausen and Zerust). That pattern indicates the Respondent is doing the same thing in this case, namely, appropriating the well-known JLL mark. In the circumstances of this case, such a showing is sufficient to establish bad faith registration of the disputed domain name.
Bad faith use is found from the Respondent’s activities of passively holding the disputed domain name. That the disputed domain name is currently inactive does not prevent a finding of bad faith. Playboy Enterprises International, Inc. v. Registration Private, Domain Protection Services Inc. / Domain Vault, Domain Vault LLC, WIPO Case No. D2018-1456. Given (i) the degree of reputation of the Complainant’s mark, (ii) the failure of the Respondent to submit a response or to provide any evidence of actual or contemplated good-faith use, and (iii) the implausibility of any good faith use to which the disputed domain name may be put, the Panel finds bad faith use. See, WIPO Overview of WIPO Panel Views on Selected UDRP Questions, Third Edition, section 3.3. For these reasons, the Panel finds that the Complainant has successfully met this third Policy element.
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 <eu-jll.com> be transferred to the Complainant.
Evan D. Brown
Date: May 28, 2019