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Domain name disputes

What’s in a name?

Registering domain names is easy. Getting them back (or hanging onto them) is a little more tricky. 

So here’s the deal. Domain names are registered on a first-come, first-served basis. So if you register a name you get to keep it forever, right?  Not necessarily. Registrations are open to challenge on the basis the registrant does not have rights in the name or the registration is unfair or in bad faith. 

Preparing and defending domain name complaints is a relatively new field so it requires specialist experience or it can get messy. 

Our team has in-depth experience of both the New Zealand DRSP and ICANN UDRP procedures.  A lot of scary acronyms but basically it means they can:

  • Notify others of your rights in a domain name
  • Negotiate recovery of a domain name
  • Lodge a complaint under the New Zealand Dispute Resolution Service Policy for .nz domain names
  • Lodge a complaint under the Uniform Dispute Resolution Procedure for .com, .net and other TLD’s
  • File court proceedings, if necessary, based on trade mark infringement and/or breach of the Fair Trading Act 1986 and/or the tort of passing off.
"What’s the value of a click, if that click leads to the sale of a $20m plane…?" - Rick Schwartz

Key people

Whether it’s .nz or .com our team can help you secure and defend domain name registration.

Ben Cain, Hamilton, Tauranga

Senior Associate

Clients we have helped

We’ve helped these businesses recover or defend domain name complaints in recent times.

What people say
"Intellectual property disputes and the attendant litigation are seldom easy or pleasant experiences. My Company’s experience with James & Wells was exemplary and we are best pleased with the results they achieved on our behalf."
Dave Kenyon, Director - Rotating Machinery Limited
"James & Wells provided a very good service in relation to a local domain name complaint that they prepared on our behalf. Their advice was good, concise and prompt and I would definitely use them in future for a similar matter."
Sarah Walker, Trade Mark Attorney - Reckitt Benckiser
"James & Wells achieved a great result for us and exceeded our expectations in securing all of the disputed registrations. It was a real pleasure to deal with Ben Cain and the clear and concise communication made what would probably be a seemingly daunting process run smoothly and pretty painless."
Janet Williams, Director - NZ Detector Dogs