UDRP CASE SUMMARY ARCHIVES - DOMAIN NAME LEGAL DISPUTES

Marriott International Inc. v. Alfred Radu

[Indexed as: Marriott International v. Radu]
[Indexed as: Marriot-Hotels.com]

National Arbitration Forum
Administrative Panel Decision

Case No: FA0002000093637
Commenced: February 24, 2000
Judgement: March 30, 2000

Presiding Panelist: Tyrus R. Atkinson, Jr.

Domain name - Uniform Domain Name Dispute Resolution Policy - ICANN - US Service Mark - US Patent and Trademark - Identical - Confusingly similar -  Wide use and advertisement - Bad faith registration - Bad faith use

Complainant holds the Service Mark in the name "Marriott Hotels" from the United States Patent and Trademark Office, since 1984. Registrant registered the domain name, Marriot-Hotels.com, on December 26, 1998.  Complainant operates one of the  world's largest hotel, restaurant and hospitality companies  under the name Marriott or Marriott Hotels. Complainant contends that Respondent has no legitimate interests in respect to the domain name and that Respondent registered the domain name in bad faith. 

 Held, Name Transferred to Complainant

The domain name "Marriott?Hotels.com" registered by the Respondent with Network Solutions Inc. is identical to the Complainant's registered Service Mark "Marriott Hotels".  Respondent registered the domain name long after "Marriott Hotels" had been made into a well known and famous name by Complainant through extensive use and advertisement. Respondent knew or should have known of the existence of the entities known as Marriott Hotels. 

Respondent has no legitimate or valid interest in the domain name "Marriott?Hotels.com". Respondent's retention of said domain name causes and would cause confusion and could
lessen Complainant's rights to use and profit by its registered Service Mark and established use of the name, Marriott Hotels.

The only use to which Respondent has used the domain name as shown in this Record is to attempt to sell the domain name either to Complainant or some other party for a sum in excess of any costs associated with its registration. Respondent registered and acquired the domain name "Marriott?Hotels.com" in bad faith.
 
 
 

Policies referred to

>Uniform Domain Name Dispute Resolution Policy, adopted by the Internet Corporation
for Assigned Names and Numbers (ICANN) on October 24, 1999.

Registration Agreements referred to

Network Solutions Service Agreement Version 4.0

1.  The Parties

An administrative hearing was held on the merits of the above styled case on March 30, 2000, before Tyrus R. Atkinson, Jr., Arbitrator, on the Complaint filed by Marriott International Inc. the "Complainant", against Alfred Radu, the "Respondent". Complainant was represented by James Davis, II of the firm of Arent, Fox, Kintner, Plotkin & Kahn, PLLC, 1050 Connecticut Avenue, N.W., Washington, DC 20036?5339. No representation was submitted in behalf of
Respondent. Based upon the written record submitted to the Arbitrator, and upon nothing else, a decision and findings are made as follows:

2.   Jurisdictional Findings

An administrative proceeding was commenced by Complainant against Respondent pursuant to the Uniform Domain Name Dispute Resolution Policy, adopted by the Internet Corporation
for Assigned Names and Numbers (ICANN) on October 24, 1999.

A Complaint submitted by Complainant was received on February 7, 2000, by the National Arbitration Forum. Complainant certified that the Complaint and the Complaint Transmittal Sheet was sent or transmitted to the Respondent on February 4, 2000. 

Administrative proceedings commenced upon February 24, 2000. Respondent was notified to submit a Response within twenty (20) days the date of receipt of notification. Respondent
neither filed, submitted nor served the National Arbitration Forum with a written response to the Complaint. Respondent is in default.

The National Arbitration Forum notified Network Solutions, Inc. of the initiation of this action.

Network Solution, Inc. verified that it is the Registrar of the domain name "MARRIOTT?HOTELS.COM", that the Registrant is Alfred Radu, 173 East Starcrest Dr., Orem, UT 84085, and that the domain registration is on "Hold" status. Network Solutions, Inc. further verified that the Registrant, Alfred Radu, is bound by the Network Solutions Service
Agreement Version 4.0

The National Arbitration Forum complied in this case with the procedural requirements set out in the Policy and Rules adopted by ICAAN.

3.   Statement of the Case

Complainant is the owner of numerous trademark registrations worldwide for marks that use the name "Marriott", including trademark registration in the United States. Complainant contends that the domain name, "Marriott?Hotels.com" be transferred to Complainant from Respondent who presently holds the domain name "Marriott?Hotels.com" and has held the said domain name since December 26, 1998.

Complainant contends that it operates hotels, restaurant and hospitality companies under the name Marriott and that each year millions of customers obtain products and services offered under the name Marriott. Millions of individuals are exposed to the name Marriott through television programs, radio broadcasts and print media. Because of substantial advertising expenditures and sales, the name Marriott has become well known and famous. Complainant contends that Respondent has no legitimate interests in respect to the domain name and that Respondent registered the domain name in bad faith. 
 
 

 4.   Findings of Fact

1. Complainant is the owner of hotels bearing the name Marriott Hotels.

2.   As early as 1957, Marriott adopted and began using the name Marriott in interstate and international commerce in connection with its goods and services. The name has been
used continuously and extensively since that time.

3.   Complainant has, since 1984, held a Service Mark in the name "Marriott Hotels" from the United States Patent and Trademark Office.

4.   Complainant operates one of the world's largest hotel, restaurant and hospitality companies under the name Marriott or Marriott Hotels.

5.   The name Marriott and Marriott Hotels have been and continue to be widely used, advertised, and publicized throughout the United States and the world. Millions of dollars have been spent by Complainant to put the name Marriott before the public for business reasons. Millions of customers have used Marriott facilities and services.

6.   The domain name "Marriott?Hotels.com" is virtually identical to the registered Service Mark "Marriott Hotels". 

7.   Respondent registered the domain name "Marriott?Hotels.com" on December 26, 1998. This was long after the name "Marriott Hotels" had been made into a well known and famous name by Complainant through extensive use of the name by numerous methods. 

8.   Respondent knew or should have known of the existence of the entities known as Marriott Hotels. 

9.   No evidence exists in the Record to show that Respondent has any interests or rights to the name Marriott Hotels in any way whatsoever. No evidence exists in the Record to show that Respondent intends a legitimate use of the domain name or to what purpose Respondent could use the domain name in any legitimate manner. 

10.  The only use to which Respondent has used the domain name as shown in this Record it to attempt to sell the domain name either to Complainant or some other party for a sum in excess of any costs associated with its registration. Respondent has contacted Complainant directly with an offer to sell the domain name.

11.  The use of the domain name by Respondent could cause substantial damage to the rights and property of Complainant.

12.   Respondent has no legitimate or valid interest in the domain name "Marriott?Hotels.com". Respondent's retention of said domain name causes and would cause confusion and could
lessen Complainant's rights to use and profit by its registered Service Mark and established use of the name, Marriott Hotels.

5.   Conclusions

1.  The domain name "Marriott?Hotels.com" registered by Respondent with Network Solutions, Inc. is identical with the words appearing on Complainant's Service Mark, and is similar to other of Complainant's marks in which it has rights, and to which Respondent has no rights or legitimate interests.

2.   Respondent registered and acquired the domain name "Marriott?Hotels.com" in bad faith.
 

6.   Decision

The domain name "Marriott-Hotels.com" registered by Respondent, Alfred Radu, be transferred to the Complainant, Marriott International, Inc.

Domain Name Transferred

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