Glossary and FAQ
Internet Corporation for Assigned Names and Numbers
- The internet governance body through whom all domain name contracts flow
Uniform Domain Name Dispute Resolution Policy
--The first domain name dispute resolution policy issued by ICANN. Applies to all gTLDs.
Uniform Rapid Suspension System
--A policy designed to be faster, cheaper mechanism than the UDRP for brand owners who don’t want the domain name; very similar to UDRP, but with stricter requirements.
Generic top level domain
--The portion of a domain name that is the farthest to the right of the dot that is regulated and controlled by ICANN.
Typically gTLDs may be sold to anyone.
New generic top level domain
--A gTLD that came into existance in 2013 as part of a giant top level domain expansion program.
Country code top level domain
--The portion of a domain name that is farthest to the right of the dot that is regulated and controlled by a specific country. CcTLDs are two-character country codes. ccTLD registries may be run by third parties or by a branch of that country’s government and there may be geographical or other limitations on who can register domains in specific ccTLDs.
3rd Level Domain
Third level domain
--The portions of a domain name are read from right to left, with the rightmost section being the top-level domain (TLD). The next segment is the second level domain, the part most people associate with a domain name. The next segment heading left is the third level domain. In most cases, the second level domain is purchased from a registrar and the user has control over all possible third level domains that are sub-created.
GDPR/Privacy Law Implications for UDRP and URS
Who is the Forum and what authorization do you have to conduct these proceedings?
The Forum is a neutral dispute resolution company. We’ve been accredited by the Internet Corporation for Assigned Names and Numbers to handle disputes that arise from the registration of domain names. Anyone who has registered a domain name in a generic top level domain (like .com, .net, or .org) has already agreed to participate in this process. The person who is claiming trademark infringement agrees to the process when they file their complaint. We have done business under the name National Arbitration Forum for over thirty years.
What is the dispute resolution process? What do you do?
The dispute resolution process, usually a Uniform Domain Name Dispute Resolution Policy ("UDRP") process, was designed to be a fast process of settling disputes over trademark rights to domain names. The Forum processes the paperwork, makes sure everyone has the documentation, and appoints the panel, who is an independent contractor.
Is there a person I can talk to at the Forum about my case?
Each case has a case coordinator assigned to direct it through the process. This person is the one whose name and email address appear at the bottom of emails sent to you and is assigned after a complaint is filed. Your case coordinator is happy to answer any questions you may have, but may not provide any legal advice. Questions they can answer include "where do I find the form I need" and "how much longer until I need to do something else." Coordinators are best reached by email; remember the other party should be copied on any correspondence to the Forum
about a case, after that case is filed. If you have a general question and have not filed a case, please send your question to email@example.com
How do I pay by credit card? What information must I supply?
When you file your complaint or response online, you will be prompted to pay online. This is the most secure way to pay. If you need to pay for an extension or missed paying online, you can send an email to your case coordinator or a fax to 612-235-3355. Include the name on the card, the full card number, the expiration date, the amount you want charged (it’s helpful if you say what type of fee you want to pay), and a signature.
Can I send a check for the fees due? To which address? When is payment due?
You may pay by check, but deadlines are very tight and your submission is not considered complete until we’ve received payment. It’s possible your case may be dismissed or your submission considered incomplete if payment is delayed. We will not begin working on your case until payment is received. If you choose to pay by check, you can send the check to:
FedEx, UPS, or Overnight Mailings (recommended):
6465 Wayzata Blvd. #470
St. Louis Park, MN 55426
Regular US Post:
PO Box 50191
Minneapolis, MN 55405
Can you remove my name from the decision posted on your website?
No, the cases on the website are closed. If you want the Panel to determine if your name may be redacted from a case you are currently involved in, you need to make that request during the proceedings in your formal submissions.
Can you remove the entire decision posted on your website?
No, the Policies and Rules that require us to post decisions require that the decisions be posted in their entirety, except for exceptional circumstances in which a Panel may decide to redact portions of the decision. A few Rulesets do not require us to post decisions online, and for those, we do not.
What file formats do you accept?
Can I get a list of all the country code cases you handle? (.tv, .me, .ws, etc.)
We attempt to maintain this list at http://www.adrforum.com/ccTLD
. We handle any country code that has adopted the UDRP and has not otherwise specified specific providers. Usually this information can be found on the website of the Registry for the country code. If you are not sure, please email us at firstname.lastname@example.org
and we will help figure it out.
Where do I find a copy of the ICANN UDRP Policy?
Can I get copies of pleadings from old cases?
If you are a party to the case, email us at email@example.com
(preferably from an email address associated with the case you had with us) and give us your name and contact information and the Forum
file number (FA number) associated with that case. We may require an affidavit or other evidence of your identity, but can usually provide the pleadings from a case you were a party to without too much trouble.
If you are not a party to the case, we will require a subpoena for case documents. Email us at firstname.lastname@example.org
for information on where to direct the subpoena.
If you are a party to the case, but you want more of the case file than the pleadings, you will also need a subpoena.
Can I appeal my case if I lose?
Yes, the Policies provide for either party to bring an action in a court of competent jurisdiction (which may or may not be limited to the mutual jurisdiction selection of Complainant in the complaint) before, during, or after a domain dispute case. If you are a Respondent and lose, you have to bring your court action within ten (10) business days of the UDRP decision to prevent the registrar from implementing the decision. If the ten days have elapsed, you may still file, but the Registrar might not be prevented from transferring the domain name per the panel’s order.
Where do I find the forms I need for preparing my filing/response?
Model complaint and response forms, as well as model stay and dismissal requests, can be found on our website at http://www.adrforum.com/domains
and then using the links on the page to find the policy you need. In most cases you can easily use the UDRP forms and customize them to suit your needs.
Filing a Complaint
Do I have to serve a copy of the Complaint upon the Respondent?
Maybe. The Policies vary. Some state that the Complainant must serve a copy of the Complaint upon the Respondent and certify that this was done in the Complaint. Some do not require these steps. Beginning in July 2015, the UDRP will no longer require Complainants to serve the Complaint on the Respondent. The Provider must request a domain name lock first.
Do I have to serve a copy of the Amended Complaint upon the Respondent?
Maybe. The Policies vary. All correspondence with the Forum is required to be copied to the other party; however, some Policies, such as the UDRP after July 2015, specify that this only applies after the case is officially commenced.
Do I have to serve a copy of the Complaint upon the Registrar?
Maybe. The Policies vary. In some cases our Supplemental Rules state that the Complainant must serve a copy of the Complaint upon the Registrar.
Do I have to serve a copy of the Amended Complaint upon the Registrar?
No, we will copy the Registrar when we serve the parties at commencement.
Do I need to send hard copies?
Under most Policies you do not need to send hard copies. If you aren't sure, check with your case coordinator or the applicable Policy.
Can I file for an extension of time to submit my amended complaint?
No, the Policies that have a deficiency check process and amendment period do not provide for an extension of time, so we are unable to grant that. If you find that you need to translate your complaint or need additional time for some other reason in a UDRP case, you can withdraw your complaint and refile within 30 days for a fee of $100. Note that if you withdraw, any lock that had been placed on the domain name will be lifted until you refile and it’s possible the registrant information may change.
How should I submit my amended complaint?
All documents should be submitted electronically where possible. Under the UDRP, all documents may be submitted electronically only.
Can I get a refund of my filing fee?
No, at this time the Forum does not refund filing fees.
How do I get the domain name transferred now that I have prevailed?
The Decision you have received from the Forum
does not automatically mean you have control of the domain name. You will need to work with the Registrar (this is the reason for notifying them in the first place and providing them with a copy of the complaint) to get them to send information needed for transfer. Not all registrars handle this process the same. Some variations include:
- Setting up an account for you and putting the domains in it, then giving you the account information so that you can transfer the domains to your registrar.
- Providing a "transfer authorization code" sometimes called a transfer code or an auth. code, that you can use with your registrar when requesting a transfer.
- Providing an "EPP" code that is for a specialized registrar-to-registrar transfer process.
- Changing the contact details of the domain name (maybe just the email address) to Complainant’s, so that when a transfer is requested, the confirmation email goes to the Complainant.
What if I’ve tried all of the above and the Registrar is not answering my emails or is refusing to help me?
First make sure you’ve waiting ten business days before requesting the transfer.
Contact your case coordinator for your case and explain the problem. Often we can re-forward the decision and that helps. If it doesn’t, our legal counsel may decide to step in.
If a Registrar is being unresponsive, you can always submit a complaint to ICANN through the UDRP Intake Report System
Can I add/remove a domain name to my case after it is filed?
If your case has not yet been commenced, you may. However, note that, for added domain names, we have to start over at the beginning, so you will delay the process.
Can I file one complaint that contains a .us domain name and a .com domain name as long as the Respondent is the same?
No, except for UDRP/RDRP, you may not "mix and match" Policies. Each complaint must be under one policy because the Rules and standards are different for each.
Where can I find contact information for the Registrar(s) for the domain name(s) in my complaint?
Most of the time, the Whois record provides at least the Registrar name, if not contact information for the Registrar. Some third-party Whois providers the Forum
- Domain Tools
- Verisign (.com and .net Registry)
Once you know who the Registrar is, you can use a search engine to find the Registrar and its contact page. Alternatively, you can search the information ICANN holds on its Registrars here
What information should I provide in my initial Complaint filing for a Respondent who is using a "privacy shield"?
Always list the information available in the Whois. The "best" Whois data is from the Registrar’s own Whois database. If that is unavailable use the Registry’s Whois search. Finally, other Whois providers, such as the first three listed above, offer good choices as well.
Can I use this process if my domain name was stolen, or hijacked, from my account?
This process is for cybersquatting of trademarked domain names. For some Policies, the processes are for if you feel the registrant doesn’t meet the requirements for registration of that name (such as the usTLD Nexus dispute policy). If, after reviewing the Policies, Rules, and Supplemental Rules, you feel your situation can be resolved using this process, you may file a complaint. The Forum is a TDRP provider.
I'm having troubles with your online system, what do I need to do?
Please review the following helpful tips before contacting us:
- The site supports Windows Internet Explorer, Mozilla Firefox, Google Chrome, and Safari (for Mac or PC), but works best in Chrome. If you are having trouble in one browser, try another one.
- Some of the applications use Adobe’s Flash or Microsoft’s Silverlight. If you don’t have one of those installed (such as on an iPad), you could encounter problems. You will need to switch to a computer that has one of those programs. You can install Flash or Silverlight for free.
- Please be sure to file as a Guest unless you are sure you have a Portal login sent to you by the Forum.
- If you are uploading documents, be sure you’ve consulted Annex A to the Supplemental Rules. File types not permitted by our Supplemental Rules may not be uploaded.
- If you get to the end of the submission process and you’ve paid a fee with a credit card and receive a "transaction declined" message, there is a problem with the credit card processing. If you are certain you have sufficient funds available, please contact your credit card company to determine why they’ve transmitted an error code to us.
- If you get to the end of a submisson and are redirected to the start page without getting a confirmation screen or confirmation email, it’s highly unlikely your case was submitted. Please try again. If you enter the domain name and receive a message that there is already a case with that domain name in the system, then you’ll know the submission was received. If not, please continue with refiling.
- If you have an Amended Complaint or other document to file, you may do so via email. Otherwise, you may request a Portal account (from your case coordinator). Once on the Portal, you can upload all documents and requests, and pay any fees online, as well as manage all of your cases electronically from one dashboard.
I'm still having problems after reviewing your tips, how do I contact you?
Please send an email to DDtech@adrforum.com
with as much of the following information as you can:
- What were you trying to do? (Be as specific as possible: "I was clicking 'upload doc'" or "I was entering my domain names by copying and pasting."). If you can copy/paste the URL for the page you were on, it would help.
- Provide a "screen shot" of the error you saw. To obtain this, with the error message showing on your screen, hit the "print scrn" or "prt sc" key on your computer (sometimes you need to hold or press "control" or "function" ("fn") first). Open an email, a Word doc, or a Powerpoint presentation and press "control+ v" (or right click and select paste) to paste the screen shot into the document.
- What date/time/timezone were you trying to use the website?
- How many times did you try it?
- Are you using a Mac or PC?
- What is your Internet browser?
- Were you able to work around the issue for now (perhaps by filing manually or emailing the extra documents, etc)?
GDPR/Privacy Law Implications for UDRP and URS
The European Union General Data Protection Regulation ("GDPR") and other privacy laws have and will continue to have an impact on the accessibility of WHOIS information.
As of May 25, 2018,
publicly available WHOIS data will not include full contact information for domain name registrants in many instances. On May 17, 2018,
ICANN released a Temporary Specification for gTLD Registration Data (“Temporary Specification”) to address the implications of the GDPR.
See, www.icann.org/resources/pages/gtld-registration-data-specs-en .
Forum has continued to accept and administer domain name disputes under the UDRP and URS pursuant
to the Temporary Specification.
How can a trademark owner find domain name registrant details in the wake of GDPR and other privacy laws?
The registrar is required to provide an anonymized email address or a web-based contact form in order to facilitate communication with the domain name registrant.
How can a trademark owner file a complaint against a domain name registrant if the WHOIS information is not available?
Currently, not all WHOIS information is unavailable. A complainant will be required to verify that WHOIS information is not publicly available for the domain name(s) at issue in the complaint.
If the WHOIS information is not publicly available, Forum will accept a complaint without complete contact information for the registrant.
Once the complaint is filed, Forum will contact the registrar or registry to obtain the information. The ICANN Temporary Specification, Annexes D and E acknowledge
that Forum, as a Provider, will be provided with registrant information upon the filing of a complaint.
In UDRP cases, Forum will then request that the complainant amend the complaint to reflect the correct registrant contact information.
What happens if the registrar does not provide the information to Forum upon request?
There have been instances of delay in obtaining the requested information, but Forum has not experienced a refusal from a registrar or registry to provide registrant information.
If an ICANN-accredited registrar refuses to provide registrant information, Forum will work with ICANN compliance staff and inform the complainant of the problem.
Will the procedure be different for URS cases under the Temporary Specification?
Yes. Amendment of a URS complaint with additional registrant information is not permitted under the URS Procedure and Rules.
However, the Temporary Specification does allow for Forum to add registrant information after the complaint is filed.
If registration data is masked in a URS case, it will be treated similarly to a privacy shield and the registry will provide verification with whatever contact details it has available.
Forum will use this information for service unless Forum receives a response from a registrar with additional registrant contact information.
The most complete information obtained will be used for service purposes, and will be provided to the complainant upon request.
The Examiner will be provided the registrant information obtained upon appointment to the case.
ICANN has initiated an Expedited Policy Development Process (“EPDP”) to consider the adoption or modification of the Temporary Specification.
It is anticipated that the EPDP will include discussion of a standardized access model
to nonpublic registration information. Forum is following the activity of the EPDP group and will send out and post updates as necessary.