Domain Dispute Attorneys
As one of the first law firms to focus on Internet law, our team has handled hundreds of domain disputes and cybersquatting conflicts.
All Kelly / Warner attorneys are well-versed in online intellectual property law. We know how to solve typosquatting, cybersquatting, and domain dispute challenges - quickly.Let's Talk »
What Is Cybersquatting?
A 30-Second Explanation
Here’s an eye-opening statistic: 1 in 28 web pages violates copyright and cybersquatting law in some manner. Moreover, approximately 5% of “typosquatting” schemes are initiated by cyber criminals and adult entertainment purveyors.
What U.S. law addresses the legalities of cybersquatting?
The Anticybersquatting Consumer Protection Act (ACPA) gives intellectual property holders exclusive rights to the domain names donning their trademarks. For example, Google is singularly entitled to Google.com and Google.org.
What if I let my domain lapse? Is it still protected under the ACPA?
If a company doesn't register its mark with the United States Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO), but the mark is established in a given industry, it’s considered a "common law trademark" and protected under the ACPA – even if the URL registration lapses.
Domain Dispute Legal Remedies: UDRP, ICANN, Legal Claims
The majority of domain disputes are arbitrated through the Uniform Domain Name Dispute Resolution Policy. An international intellectual property "process" established by the Internet Corporation for Assigned Names and Numbers (ICANN), the UDRP outlines a set of rules regarding cybersquatting legalities.
Uniform Domain Name Dispute Resolution Policy panelists consider:
- Trademark Issues
- Legitimate Interest of Each Parties’ Claim to the URL
- Evidence of Bad Faith Intent to Profit
U.S. courts respect UDRP decisions. If, however, a UDRP cybersquatting ruling falls outside of acceptable federal policy, you can follow up an anti-cybersquatting lawsuit to overturn the ICANN decision.
Pro Tip: to avoid cybersquatting issues, engage in a little “defensive domain registration purchasing.” The small amount it will cost to keep them out of an enemy's hands is worth its weight in a Bitcoin.