WIPO Arbitration and Mediation Center
ADMINISTRATIVE PANEL DECISION
Pet Plan Ltd v. Anonymize, Inc. / Filipe Diogo
Case No. D2019-2704
1. The Parties
The Complainant is Pet Plan Ltd, United Kingdom, represented by CSC Digital Brand Services AB, Sweden.
The Respondent is Anonymize, Inc. / Filipe Diogo, Portugal.
2. The Domain Name and Registrar
The disputed domain name <petplan.xyz> (the “Domain Name”) is registered with Epik, Inc. (the “Registrar”).
3. Procedural History
The Complaint was filed with the WIPO Arbitration and Mediation Center (the “Center”) on November 5, 2019. On November 5, 2019, the Center transmitted by email to the Registrar a request for registrar verification in connection with the Domain Name. On November 6, 2019, the Registrar transmitted by email to the Center its verification response disclosing registrant and contact information for the Domain Name which differed from the named Respondent and contact information in the Complaint. The Center sent an email communication to the Complainant on November 8, 2019 providing the registrant and contact information disclosed by the Registrar, and inviting the Complainant to submit an amendment to the Complaint. The Complainant filed an amended Complaint on November 13, 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 November 14, 2019. In accordance with the Rules, paragraph 5, the due date for Response was December 4, 2019. The Respondent did not submit any response. Accordingly, the Center notified the Respondent’s default on December 9, 2019.
The Center appointed Mathias Lilleengen as the sole panelist in this matter on December 11, 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.
On December 11, 2019 an email was received after the Panel appointment, apologizing for the delay in responding and stating its willingness to unlock the Domain Name and provide the transfer code for the transfer of the Domain Name. The email was forwarded to the administrative Panel on December 12, 2019. The Procedural Order No. 1 was transmitted to the Parties on December 16, 2019. The Procedural Order No. 1 instructed the Complainant to inform the Center by December 18, 2019 on whether it wished to explore settlement options and/or; or proceed to a decision. On December 19, 2019, the Complainant informed the Center and Respondent that given that the Panel has already been appointed, it would like to proceed to the decision.
4. Factual Background
The Complainant provides pet insurance in the United Kingdom and around the globe through various licensees (United States, Canada, Australia, New Zealand, Brazil, Germany, France, Spain, and the Netherlands). In addition, it offers insurance to pet care professionals and a pet finding service. The company was founded in 1976 and is based in Brentford, United Kingdom. It is now a subsidiary of Allianz Insurance plc., part of the Allianz Global Group.
The Complainant has continually operated under the Pet Plan name and has used the PETPLAN mark in connection with its pet insurance products. The Complainant owns trademark registrations across various jurisdictions, such as United States trademark No. 3161569, United Kingdom trademark no. 2052294 and European Union trademark No. 000328492. The Complainant has Internet presence through its websites as well as its various social medial platforms, such as Facebook and Twitter. The Complainant has won awards such as the World Branding Awards’ Brand of the Year.
According to the Registrar, the Respondent registered the Domain Name on August 23, 2019. The Domain Name redirects to a webpage where the Domain Name is offered for sale.
5. Parties’ Contentions
The Complainant has documented trademark registrations in the Complaint. The Complainant argues that its trademark is a distinctive and well-known mark used by the Complainant in connection with pet insurance for over 40 years, and that the Domain Name is identical to the Complainant’s trademark.
The Complainant argues that the Respondent has no rights or legitimate interests in the Domain Name. The Domain Name redirects internet users to a SEDO For Sale page where the Respondent has listed the Domain Name for sale in the amount of USD 395. Furthermore, at the time of filing the complaint, the Respondent was using a privacy WhoIS service, which past panels have found to equate to a lack of legitimate interest.
The Complainant argues that the Respondent knew, or at least should have known, of the Complainant and its trademarks. The registration of the Domain Name postdates the well-known trademarks. The Domain Name has been used in bad faith, as the Domain Name is not being used for any purpose other than to sell the Domain Name. Moreover, the Complainants points to the fact that the Respondent recently acted under similar circumstances (see Micro Electronics, Inc. v. Filipe Diogo, FA1909001863581). Finally, the use of a privacy service and the fact that the Respondent has not replied to the Complainant, further points to bad faith.
The Respondent did not reply to the Complainant’s contentions.
6. Discussion and Findings
A. Identical or Confusingly Similar
The Complainant has documented trademark registrations in PETPLAN. In this case, the Domain Name is identical to the Complainant’s trademark. For the purposes of assessing under paragraph 4(a)(i) of the Policy, it is permissible for the Panel to ignore the generic Top-Level Domain (“gTLD”) “.xyz”.
The Panel finds that the Domain Name is identical to a trademark in which the Complainant has rights in accordance with paragraph 4(a)(i) of the Policy.
B. Rights or Legitimate Interests
There is no evidence suggesting that the Respondent has any rights or legitimate interests in the Domain Name. The Complainant has not granted any authorization to the Respondent. The Domain Name redirects to a webpage where the Domain Name is listed for sale for USD 395. Such use is as in the circumstances of this case not bona fide, rather it is evidence of lack of rights or legitimate interests, and of bad faith.
The Panel finds that the Complainant has made out an unrebutted case. Accordingly, the Panel finds that the Respondent has no rights or legitimate interests in respect of the Domain Name in accordance with paragraph 4(a)(ii) of the Policy.
C. Registered and Used in Bad Faith
Based on the evidence, it is likely that the Respondent knew of the Complainant’s trademark and its business when the Respondent registered the Domain Name. The Complainant’s trademark rights predate the Domain Name registration. The fact that the Domain Name redirects to a webpage where the Domain Name is offered for sale, further points to bad faith. Moreover, the Respondent has acted under similar circumstances before (see Micro Electronics, Inc. v. Filipe Diogo, FA1909001863581), and at least initially used a privacy service to hide his identity.
The Panel concludes that the Domain Name was registered and is being used in bad faith, within the meaning of the paragraph 4(a)(iii) of the Policy.
The Panel moreover notes the Respondent’s intent and willingness to cede the Domain Name to the Complainant.
For the foregoing reasons, in accordance with paragraphs 4(i) of the Policy and 15 of the Rules, the Panel orders that the Domain Name, <petplan.xyz> be transferred to the Complainant.
Date: December 31, 2019