Case Number: FA2012001924095
Complainant: Clean Slate Credit Solutions
Represented by: Delisa N. Purchase
A consumer credit-repair company, Clean Slate Credit Solutions, has been found guilty of trying to use the UDRP process to hijack the domain name, gotcredit.com, from its registered owner. Clean Slate Credit Solutions, represented by Washington, D.C.-based attorney Delisa N. Purchase, was found guilty of Reverse Domain Name Hijacking by a three-member panel of the National Arbitration Forum on January 8, 2021.
The respondent, Jake Rustenhoven, of Iowa, observed in his answer that his ownership of the domain name predates any trademarks currently held by the credit company, negating any chance the domain was registered in bad faith. Mr. Rustenhoven is a marketer and blogger who uses the domain for marketing surveys.
The current use of the domain, coupled with its registration history, was enough to convince the panelists the UDRP case was one of bad faith. “The Panel finds that there is clear evidence that before any notice of a dispute about the disputed domain name, and indeed well before Complainant even began using its mark in commerce, Respondent was using the disputed domain name in connection with a bona fide offering of goods or services or for a legitimate noncommercial or fair use,” the panelists wrote.
“Counsel should have known that she could not prove either … elements of Complainant’s case, yet proceeded to institute this dispute nonetheless,” the panel added. “Accordingly, the Panel finds that Complainant attempted reverse domain hijacking by instituting this dispute.”