A .Com Domain Name Increases A Company's Exposure To Foreign Lawsuits, Rules European Court

Posted in: Domain Names at 13/12/2010 18:22

"Companies using a .com or .eu domain name, or displaying international codes for phone numbers, are more likely to be 'directing' their activities at foreign consumers, affecting where they can sue or be sued, the Court of Justice of the EU has ruled," a report in OUT-LAW.COM says.

The report notes that consumers can elect to have contract disputes heard in "their own country if a company in another EU Member State has directed its business at consumers in that state or all EU Member States."

"The ECJ said, though, that merely operating a website which foreigners can access is not enough to qualify as a company directing its activities to other countries."

The decision comes about following two cases ruled on by the European Court of Justice, one where an Austrian resident sought a refund from a German shipping company "for a voyage that he booked but did not take."

The other involved a German resident who booked hotel rooms in Austria who left without paying his bill due to complaints about the accommodation.

To read the OUT-LAW.com report in full, see out-law.com/page-11658.

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