We can't give legal advice here. I do question the venues (USA/UK). How long have you owned the domain? If some time then you might have a stance, if short they might have a stance. If a trademark is involved (and they own it) they might have a stance, if not a trademark you might have a stance.
All that said, you need an attorney who will make sure the venue is YOUR country. IE. Make them come to you... do not accept a default judgment. In other words, get on the stick if you think it is worth 3k and you can afford it.
Welcome to the real world of screw and get screwed.
[edited by: tangor at 9:05 am (utc) on Apr 20, 2010]
I would suggest shopping around to find a solicitor with some experience in the field.
Apart from the fact that we are explicitly barred from giving legal advice in this forum there is too much information missing from your post to form any sort of opinion.
I've had this happen to me and in the end you're going to have to come out with decent amounts of cash (relative statement, cost me about $5000) to defend your position but you'll learn a lot.
I'm not suggesting this: but given what I know now I would have told the company that was threatening me with trademark infringement, cybersquatting, you name it to get lost and they likely would have.
But, you should seek damn good legal representation (pm me if you want...no I'm not an attorney but was just as distressed when this happened to me)--it costs more upfront but saves you loads in the end.
They are saying that they will take ICANN proceedings.
Should i worry about this ?
|They are saying that they will take ICANN proceedings. |
They'll say a lot, that's the whole point.
My understanding is if you try to sell a domain for a higher price you can be accused of buying it for the sole purpose of selling it for profit. I forget the exact issue, but anyhow, the possible buyer can then start a dispute which they will probably win.
The trick as I understand it is that you do not quote for or charge for the domain, you charge for the service of transferring the domain and the like.
Still, in your case it is too late for that. Sorry.
The domain name is pretty crucial to you keeping the domain. If it's something like "widgets" then there's no way you're keeping it.
[edited by: engine at 12:18 pm (utc) on Apr 20, 2010]
[edit reason] specifiic example removed [/edit]
Let's think about your options (not legal advice here...) You have two low cost / no cost options:
1 - Give up and sell the domain name and make your £125. Quite frankly that doesn't seem like a fair price at all.
2 - Hold out and see if they make a reasonable offer (call their potential bluff).
I don't see a lot of downside to option 2. At the worst, you're going to lose £125.
I'm saying the above with the hope you're not cybersquatting and you've actually spent time and money developing the domain...
Sudden thought. This is a generic TLD as in .com or .net that we are talking about and not a country level TLD such as .uk?
Assuming the summary below is true, I would reply as follows.
|I have now considered this matter and taken advice. |
I registered the domain name [insert name] in good faith on [insert date]. At the time of registration and to the best of my knowledge, it did not infringe any trademarks. Subsequently, I have operated the domain name in good faith, without any attempt to deceive or confuse visitors.
If you believe you have grounds to bring a valid UDRP case against me, please summarise it, otherwise do not waste my time with idle threats. The offer to sell remains but the price is now £4,000.
In any case, unless you intend to roll over, reply promptly, be polite and concise. Do not waffle and don't tell them anything they don't need to know. Use good grammar, punctuation and spelling.
I am not a lawyer. I take no responsibility for the outcome should you follow some or all of my advice.
Do you know how much it would cost for them to do a UDRP case against me ? I would of thought it would end up costing them more than the £125 they are offering me ?
To be honest i would rather end up with nothing than go below what i want for the domain.
From the WIPO guide:
For a case filed with the WIPO Center involving between 1 and 5 domain names that is to be decided by a single Panelist, the fee is USD1500. For a case that is to be decided by 3 Panelists, the fee is USD4000.
I forgot this - which is semi important:
It is the parties that decide whether the case is to proceed before 1 or 3 Panelists.
The Complainant is responsible for paying the total fees. The only time the Respondent has to share in the fees is when the Respondent chooses to have the case decided by 3 Panelists and the Complainant had chosen a single Panelist.
The fees described above do not include any payment that might have to be made to a lawyer representing a party in the administrative proceeding.
I've responded to lawyers who have written me about such matters in 2 ways.
1.) I emailed them back.
2.) Ignored them.
Number 2 has been much more effective
Domain name arbitration jusrisdiction is not limited by physical borders. You agreed to arbitration via the ICANN's Uniform Domain-Name Dispute-Resolution Policy (UDRP) when you registered the name.
The fees for domains at National Arbitration Forum are almost as much as WIPO - US$1300 for 1 panelist and $2600 for 3 panelists.
My suggestion is to study a couple dozen similar cases at WIPO and at the National Arbitration Forum. That will give you an idea to know if they have a case. If they think they have a case, they will certainly take it to arbitration before paying you approximately US$4500.