Domain Name Dispute Resolution: FAQs

HomeContentDomain Name Dispute Resolution: FAQs

1. Why dispute the ownership of a domain name?

For the purposes of protecting the integrity of your own brand, preventing business competitors from depriving unjust benefits from your business goodwill, bad faith use, or to prevent counterfeiting, you may wish to dispute the ownership of a domain name via domain name dispute resolution proceedings.


2. What policies are available to dispute the ownership of a domain name?

Different policies are available for disputing the ownership of gTLDs and ccTLDs. For example, gTLDs such as .com, .org and .net are covered by UDRP, while ccTLDs such as .hk and .cn are covered by specific regional policies (i.e., Hong Kong Domain Name Dispute Resolution Policy (HKDRP) and the CNNIC Domain Name Dispute Resolution Policy (CNDRP) respectively).

The applicable policy is incorporated in the registration agreement between the registrant and registrar. The registration agreement contains the terms and conditions for handling a dispute between a domain name registrant and a third party other than the registrar.


3. Who can dispute the ownership of a domain name? Who can file a complaint?

Anyone who wishes to protect their rights in relation to a domain name can file a complaint.  For example, the owner or licensee of a registered trademark, or anyone who is able to establish rights in a well-known prior trademark or is able to show “prior use” of an unregistered trademark in accordance with the relevant policy.


4. Should I submit a complaint electronically or by hard copy?

In accordance with Paragraph 3(b) of the UDRP Rules, Article 3 and 5 of the HKIAC Supplemental Rules to China ccTLD Dispute Resolution Policy Rules and Paragraph 3(b) of the Domain Name Dispute Resolution Policy for .hk and .香港 domain names Rules of Procedure, the Complainant shall submit the complaint including any annexes in electronic form.


5. What should I do if I cannot find the WHOIS information of the disputed domain? Is it a requirement to provide details of the respondent when filing a complaint?

The WHOIS information of some registrants is protected by privacy protection offered by registrars. As such, details of those registrants are not disclosed to the public. You may still fill in the details of the respondent on the complaint form based on what is publicly available or to the best of your knowledge.

Upon receipt of the complaint, HKIAC will verify and confirm the details of the respondent with the relevant registrar. If there is a discrepancy, the complainant will be notified of the WHOIS information provided by the registrar. The complainant shall then amend the corresponding parts of the complaint accordingly.


6. What should I do if I cannot find the registration agreement of the relevant registrar when filing a complaint?

The registration agreements are available on the websites of all Registrars accredited by domain name administrative bodies such as ICANN, CNNIC and HKIRC. If there are any special circumstances that mean you cannot retrieve the registration agreement from the website of the relevant registrar, you may still file a complaint but must state the position in the relevant section(s) of the complaint form.


7. What are the fees for filing a domain name dispute?

Our domain name dispute resolution services cover a wide range of domain name dispute resolution policies and the schedules of fees vary with policies.

For details, please refer to:


8. Can the losing party file an appeal?

There are no appeal mechanisms under domain name dispute resolution polices except for the Uniform Rapid Suspension System (URS). However, the losing party can seek recourse through the courts.

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