New Nominet Consultation On An Important Change To Its Dispute Resolution Service

Nominet held an open consultation last year on reforming their Dispute Resolution Service. Following the consultation, Nominet produced a paper suggesting a number of changes, one of which was the introduction of a default transfer system, providing an automatic transfer of domain names in the event a response to a DRS complaint is not received from the domain name registrant.The proposed change, notes an article by Susan Barty and Phillip Carnell on Mondaq, will amend the DRS to include a new process: Where there is no response to a DRS complaint by the registrant, the complaining party will be able to obtain an automatic transfer for the domain name(s) complained about for a fee of £200 plus VAT. The proposal is that domains will not transfer immediately, but will first become non-operational for a month. This will alert the registrant that something is happening with their domain name. If the registrant then decides to file a response, it can pay £100 plus VAT to have the transfer reversed.Current statistics show that less than 50% of complaints are responded to according to the Mondaq article. The existing option for complainants where there is no response to a complaint is either to withdraw their complaint or to pay £750 plus VAT to have an independent expert appointed. The proposed changes should speed up dispute resolutions, while there is some chance the changes will increase the possibility the DRS process will be abused, and that multiple complaints will be commenced against the same registrant in the hope that no response is received.The above information was sourced from an article written by Susan Barty and Phillip Carnell for Law-Now, CMS Cameron McKenna’s free online information service. It is available from CMS Cameron McKenna’s Law-Now website address is

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