WIPO Arbitration and Mediation Center

ADMINISTRATIVE PANEL DECISION

Carvana, LLC v. Registration Private of Domains By Proxy, LLC / Saro Avakian

Case No. D2021-0271

1. The Parties

The Complainant is Carvana, LLC, United States of America, represented by Bryan Cave Leighton Paisner, United States of America.

The Respondent is Registration Private of Domains By Proxy, LLC, United States of America / Saro Avakian, United States of America.

2. The Domain Name and Registrar

The disputed domain name <carvanarentals.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 January 29, 2021. On January 29, 2021, the Center transmitted by email to the Registrar a request for registrar verification in connection with the disputed domain name. On January 29, 2021, the Registrar transmitted by email to the Center its verification response disclosing registrant and contact information for the disputed domain name which differed from the named Respondent and contact information in the Complaint. The Center sent an email communication to the Complainant on February 3, 2021 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 February 4, 2021.

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 February 8, 2021. In accordance with the Rules, paragraph 5, the due date for Response was February 28, 2021. The Respondent did not submit any response. Accordingly, the Center notified the Respondent’s default on March 2, 2021.

The Center appointed Lynda J. Zadra-Symes as the sole panelist in this matter on March 26, 2021. 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 operates an e-commerce platform for buying and selling used cars. Complainant promotes and renders its online vehicle dealership services and online vehicle financial services throughout the United States of America (“United States” or “US”) under the mark CARVANA and through its primary website located at “www.carvana.com”, which hosts its e-commerce platform. Complainant also offers extended warranty and gap insurance services for the vehicles it sells. Complainant delivers vehicles throughout the US and operates 26 Carvana vending machines located in major cities in the United States. Complainant launched in January 2013 and currently operates in more than 261 markets, covering more than 73.2% of the US population. In 2019, Complainant sold more than 175,000 vehicles to retail customers with used vehicle sales revenue exceeding USD 3 billion. Complainant’s website averages more than 5 million unique visitors each month.

Complainant owns several trademark registrations for its CARVANA mark and variations thereof in the United States, including the following:

CARVANA, US Registration No. 4,328,785, registered April 30, 2013 for “online dealership services featuring automobiles” and “online financing services in the field of automobile loans.”

CARVANACARE, US Registration No. 4,971,997, registered June 7, 2015 for “extended warranty services, namely service contracts; Providing extended warranties on automobiles.”

CARVANA, US Registration No. 5,022,315, filed January 7, 2016, registered August 16, 2016 for “shipping, pickup, and delivery services for automobiles.”

CARVANA (stylized), US Registration No. 6,237,292, filed November 13, 2019, registered April 21, 2020 for “online dealership services featuring automobiles” and “online financing services in the field of automobile loans; extended warranty services, namely, service contracts; providing extended warranties on automobiles” and “shipping, pickup, and delivery services for automobiles.”

Respondent registered the disputed domain name on November 2, 2020. The disputed domain name currently resolves to a parked page with links to third-party commercial websites.

5. Parties’ Contentions

A. Complainant

Complainant contends that the disputed domain name is identical to and 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

Respondent did not reply to Complainant’s contentions.

6. Discussion and Findings

In order to succeed in its claim, Complainant must demonstrate that all of the elements enumerated in paragraph 4(a) of the Policy have been satisfied:

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

(ii) Respondent has no rights or legitimate interests with respect to the disputed domain name; and

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

Paragraph 15(a) of the Rules instructs the Panel to decide a complaint “on the basis of the statements and documents submitted and in accordance with the Policy, these Rules and any rules and principles of law that it deems applicable”.

A. Identical or Confusingly Similar

Complainant has demonstrated that it has rights in the trademark CARVANA in connection with automobile rental services, extended warranty services and related financing services, shipping, pickup and delivery services and service contracts. The disputed domain name incorporates Complainant’s CARVANA mark in its entirety. The addition of the word “rentals”, which describes a feature of a common component of the automobile industry in which Complainant operates, does not prevent the CARVANA mark from being recognizable in the disputed domain name. See WIPO Overview of WIPO Panel Views on Selected UDRP Questions, Third Edition (“WIPO Overview 3.0”), section 1.8.

Accordingly, the Panel finds that the disputed domain name is confusingly similar to Complainant’s CARVANA trademark.

B. Rights or Legitimate Interests

Complainant contends that Respondent is not in any way associated with Complainant and has never sought or received authorization or a license to use Complainant’s CARVANA trademark. The record is devoid of any facts that establish any rights or legitimate interests of Respondent in the disputed domain name. There is no evidence that Respondent has been commonly known by the disputed domain name or that it has acquired any rights that might predate Complainant’s adoption and use of its CARVANA mark.

Respondent has not made, and is not making, a legitimate noncommercial or fair use of the disputed domain name. Respondent has not used the disputed domain name in connection with the bona fide offering of goods or services.

Instead, the record indicates that Complainant’s CARVANA mark is well known. Previous UDRP panels have recognized that Complainant’s CARVANA mark “is a distinctive, coined term that is heavily advertised and well-known.” Carvana, LLC v. Registration Private, Domains By Proxy, LLC / Cline Davis, WIPO Case No. D2020-0859 (June 4, 2020); see also Carvana, LLC v. Registration Private of Domains By Proxy, LLC / Carolina Rodrigues, Fundacion Comercio Electronico, WIPO Case No. D2020-2256 (October 20, 2020); Carvana, LLC v. Domain Administrator, Fundacion Privacy Services LTD, WIPO Case No. D2020-1533 (August 26, 2020); Carvana, LLC v. Domain Admin, Privacy Protect, LLC (PrivacyProtect.org) / Ferel Demis, WIPO Case No. D2020-2032 (September 28, 2020); Carvana, LLC v. Registration Private, Domains By Proxy, LLC / Carolina Rodrigues, Fundacion Comercio Electronico, WIPO Case No. D2020-2191 (October 31, 2020); Carvana, LLC v. Domain Administrator, Fundacion Privacy Services Ltd, WIPO Case No. D2020-2348 (October 29, 2020); Carvana, LLC v. Privacydotlink Customer 2659160 / Gary Sandor, WIPO Case No. DCO2020-0056 (December 3, 2020).

Thus, the record indicates that Respondent was well aware of Complainant’s mark and registered it for the purpose of luring Internet users seeking Complainant’s website to Respondent’s parked page for the purpose of acquiring “pay-per-click” revenue for Respondent’s financial gain. Such use is not a bona fide offering of goods or services.

The Panel finds that Complainant has satisfied the requirement of paragraph 4(a)(ii) of the Policy.

C. Registered and Used in Bad Faith

Respondent registered the disputed domain name in November 2020, many years after Complainant began using its CARVANA mark. Because the record indicates that Complainant’s CARVANA mark is distinctive and well known, it may be inferred from the record that Respondent most likely had actual knowledge of Complainant’s CARVANA trademark prior to registering the disputed domain name and that Respondent registered and used the disputed domain name to trade on Complainant’s reputation and goodwill in its CARVANA mark for financial gain. The disputed domain name is being used to divert Internet users to Respondent’s web site (and/or the websites of third parties) to generate traffic and sales commissions for Respondent’s own commercial benefit by intentionally creating a likelihood of confusion with Complainant’s mark. Such use constitutes bad faith under the Policy.

Accordingly, the Panel finds that Respondent has registered and used the disputed domain name 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, <carvanarentals.com> be transferred to the Complainant.

Lynda J. Zadra-Symes
Sole Panelist
Date: April 9, 2021