Domain disputes arise under the broader classification of Internet law. Most domain disputes arise out of a person’s or entity’s use of a trademark in the domain name or body of a website in way to cause confusion, mistake, or deception among consumers. Some domain disputes can be brought and settled through arbitration governed by the Internet Corporation for assigned Names and Numbers (ICANN) and the Uniform Domain Name Dispute Resolution Policy (UDRP). Challenges to a domain name may also be brought under the Federal statute entitled, Anti-Cybersquatting Consumer Protection Act (ACPA), among other potential causes of action. Our domain dispute lawyers are here to help.
When a domain dispute is brought under an ICANN proceeding, said proceeding begins with the filing of a petition that is prepared by a challenging party, served on a defendant, and typically requests that a domain be transferred to the challenging party or cancelled. These ICANN proceedings are typically heard before a single arbitrator or a three-member arbitration panel through, for example, the “Forum” or the World Intellectual Property Organization (“WIPO”).
Most disputes over domain names arise out of commercial competition, failed business relationships, or intentional attempts to divert Internet traffic and/or consumers for commercial or personal gain. Any misapprehensions under the UDRP or ACPA about what is and is not permissible conduct in connection with the registration and use of domain names, the domain dispute lawyers at Trademark Phoenix can assist you in evaluating the options and determining the best course of action under the circumstances.
For those who own domains, our domain name dispute lawyers can audit your existing portfolio for potential trademark issues and give advice on how to minimize the risk of future disputes. Our Team also offers trademark risk assessment, clearance search opinions, and due diligence services if you are considering registering, acquiring or investing in a new domain name for your business or portfolio.