Firms can now apply for domains similar to their company name.
American Institute of Certified Public Accountants (AICPA) and its CPA.com unit have launched an application process for early access to .CPA domain names.
This process is different from sunrise and a separate non-Trademark-Clearinghouse trademark phase the organization is running.
Only CPA firms — not individual Certified Public Accountants — can apply during this early phase. Applicants who get a .CPA domain prior to general availability must put the domain to use by, at minimum, forwarding the domain to their existing website.
Applications for this phase must be received by October 31, 2020. The phase is only for registering domain names similar to the firm’s name, not generics like tax.cpa.
Domains will be allocated on a “systematic logic-based process”, according to the .CPA website. I inquired with a support agent about what this process is. The agent told me:
We have a process that we can’t share due to manipulation of the process. Please just choose domains that are most similar to your own.
It will be interesting to see how applications for the same name will be allocated.
Non-premium domain names cost $225 per year.
General Availability for .CPA begins January 15, 2021. At that point, any licensed CPA can register a domain.
AICPA likely paid more than $2 million to secure the rights to the .CPA top level domain.