Resolving Domain Name Disputes Under The UDRP

Disputes over who has the right to register, own, use or sell domain names are very common. Domain names themselves are mere "street addresses" on the Web, but they also may contain the trademark of another. A trademark owner that feels its rights have been infringed, especially where the domain name registrant is using the domain name in connection with goods or services that are competitive with the trademark owner's, may sue in court. However, there are alternatives to litigation in court that can be expensive and time-consuming. One such resolution process occurs through the Uniform Domain Name Dispute Resolution Policy (UDRP).

I am Lawrence G. (Larry) Townsend, a Uniform Domain Name Dispute Resolution Policy lawyer in San Francisco, California. I have more than 35 years of experience zealously representing the rights of individuals and companies throughout Silicon Valley and the Bay Area. I am a firm believer in intellectual property ownership rights, and work hard to ensure my clients' rights are protected.

Call my office at 415-906-2792 to learn more about my zealous representation.

The Benefits Of The Uniform Domain Name Dispute Resolution Policy (UDRP)

Anyone who registers a <.com>, <.net>, <.org> or certain other TLDs (Top Level Domains) for his or her Web address must agree to online arbitration through the UDRP, which streamlines the dispute process. It also provides for easy initiation of a dispute, as it involves online arbitration. The goal of this arbitration process is to quickly and effectively determine who is the rightful owner of a specific domain name.

While it is possible to bring domain name litigation in federal court under cybersquatting laws, pursuing your claim through the UDRP:

  • Is less expensive
  • Is less time-consuming
  • Does not require hassling over a proper venue to hear the case, e.g., having to sue in another country to compel transfer of a domain name

Proving Bad Faith In UDRP Actions

If you wish to bring an arbitration claim for arbitration under the UDRP, you must prove that the domain name registrant:

  1. Registered the domain name in "bad faith"
  2. Used it in bad faith
  3. Trafficked (e.g., tried to sell) the domain name in bad faith

This usually means that the domain name registrant knew the trademark was owned by another party when it was registered and he or she intended to profit from the trademark owner's rights. If you are able to show bad faith, the arbitrator is authorized to instruct the registrar to transfer the domain name to you, the rightful owner.

It is important to understand that you have to prove bad faith even if the "cybersquatter" does not appear at the arbitration. You need someone who is well-versed with this process and the elements of proof to establish your claim in arbitration.

Contact Me Regarding Domain Name Trademark Infringement

Do you believe someone has stolen your domain name? Such trademark infringements can be quickly arbitrated under the Uniform Domain Name Dispute Resolution Policy. Complete this contact form to schedule a time to meet.