WIPO Arbitration and Mediation Center

ADMINISTRATIVE PANEL DECISION

Direct Financial Solutions, LLC v. Jo Boonthima

Case No. D2019-0920

1. The Parties

The Complainant is Direct Financial Solutions, LLC, United States of America (“United States” or “US”), represented by Peterson Conners LLP, Ireland.

The Respondent is Jo Boonthima, Thailand.

2. The Domain Name and Registrar

The disputed domain name <cashcentral-login.com> is registered with GoDaddy.com, LLC (the “Registrar”).

3. Procedural History

The Complaint was filed with the WIPO Arbitration and Mediation Center (the “Center”) on April 23, 2019. On April 24, 2019, the Center transmitted by email to the Registrar a request for registrar verification in connection with the disputed domain name. On April 24, 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 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 the Respondent of the Complaint, and the proceedings commenced on April 26, 2019. In accordance with the Rules, paragraph 5, the due date for Response was May 16, 2019. The Center received an email communication from the Respondent on May 12, 2019. Pursuant to paragraph 6 of the Rules, the Center notified the Parties of the commencement of the Panel appointment process on May 17, 2019.

The Center appointed Brigitte Joppich as the sole panelist in this matter on May 27, 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 has been in the business of providing a variety of consumer loans, including online loans, since 2005. It is the registered owner of inter alia US trademark registration no. 3,117,069 for CASH CENTRAL, registered on July 18, 2006, for use in connection with “financial services, namely, providing small, short-term loans” (hereinafter referred to as the “CASH CENTRAL Mark”). The Complainant offers its services online at “www.cashcentral.com”. Returning costumers can login by accessing the website from the URL “www.cashcentral.com/login”.

The disputed domain name was registered on March 17, 2016, and is used in connection with a website which offers installment and payday loans. On its website, the Respondent brands itself as CASHCENTRAL and refers to the Complainant’s domain name <cashcentral.com>.

5. Parties’ Contentions

A. Complainant

With regard to the three elements specified in the Policy, paragraph 4(a), the Complainant contends that each of the three conditions is given in the present case.

(i) The disputed domain name is identical or confusingly similar to the CASH CENTRAL Mark, as it prominently incorporates such mark and as the additional term “login” is non-distinctive and does not preclude a finding of confusing similarity.

(ii) The Respondent allegedly has no rights or legitimate interests in respect of the disputed domain name since the Respondent is not commonly known by the disputed domain name, the Respondent is not affiliated with the Complainant and has not obtained trademark rights in “cashcentral”, the Respondent is not making a legitimate noncommercial use of the disputed domain name, and the Respondent’s infringing use of the disputed domain name does not support a claim to rights or legitimate interests.

(iii) The Complainant alleges that the disputed domain name was registered and is being used in bad faith. When registering the disputed domain name, the Respondent must have been aware of the Complainant’s CASH CENTRAL Mark as the Respondent prominently refers to the Complainant’s domain name on its website and is using the disputed domain name in connection with identical services. With regard to bad faith use, the Complainant argues that the Respondent registered the disputed domain name primarily to disrupt the Complainant’s business, to divert costumers and Internet traffic from the Complainant, and to attract Internet users to the Respondent’s website for commercial gain.

B. Respondent

The Respondent did not reply in substance to the Complainant’s contentions. The Respondent submitted an informal email on May 12, 2019, stating that the disputed domain name had been removed.

6. Discussion and Findings

Under paragraph 4(a) of the Policy, the Complainant must prove that each of the following three elements is present:

(i) the disputed domain name is identical or confusingly similar to the Complainant’s trademark; 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 disputed domain name is confusingly similar to the CASH CENTRAL Mark as it contains such trademark in its entirety, merely adding the dictionary term “login”.

The Panel finds that the Complainant satisfied the requirements of the Policy, paragraph 4(a)(i).

B. Rights or Legitimate Interests

Even though the Policy requires the complainant to prove that the respondent has no rights or legitimate interests in the disputed domain name, it is the consensus view among UDRP panels that a complainant has to make only a prima facie case to fulfill the requirements of the Policy, paragraph 4(a)(ii). As a result, once a prima facie case is made, the burden of coming forward with evidence of the respondent’s rights or legitimate interests in the disputed domain name will then shift to the respondent.

The Complainant has substantiated that the Respondent has no rights or legitimate interests in the disputed domain name. The Panel finds that the Complainant has made a prima facie case that the Respondent has no rights or legitimate interests in the disputed domain name and that the burden of production has been shifted to the Respondent.

The Respondent did not deny these assertions in any way and therefore failed to come forward with any allegations or evidence demonstrating any rights or legitimate interests in the disputed domain name.

Based on the evidence before the Panel, the Panel cannot find any rights or legitimate interests of the Respondent either.

The Respondent is using the disputed domain name for a website offering services similar to those of the Complainant, displaying a website similar to the Complainant’s website, and referring to the Complainant’s domain name.

Accordingly, the Panel finds that the Complainant has proven that the Respondent has no rights or legitimate interests in respect of the disputed domain name under the Policy, paragraphs 4(a)(ii) and 4(c).

C. Registered and Used in Bad Faith

The Panel is satisfied that the Respondent registered and used the disputed domain name with full knowledge of the Complainant and its rights in the CASH CENTRAL Mark and thus in bad faith as the Respondent used the disputed domain name in connection with a website (a) featuring financial services very similar to those offered by the Complainant, (b) referring to the Complainant’s domain name, and (c) copying the look and feel of the Complainant’s website.

By fully incorporating the CASH CENTRAL Mark into the disputed domain name and by using such disputed domain name for a website advertising financial services, the Respondent was, in all likelihood, trying to divert traffic intended for the Complainant’s website to its own for commercial gain as set out under the Policy, paragraph 4(b)(iv).

Consequently, the Panel finds that the Respondent registered and used the disputed domain name in bad faith and that the Complainant satisfied the requirements of the Policy, paragraph 4(a)(iii).

7. Decision

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

Brigitte Joppich
Sole Panelist
Date: June 5, 2019