Domain name disputes

You can challenge the registration of a .eu domain name via .eu’s Alternative Dispute Resolution (ADR) procedure or in a regular court.

What is an ADR procedure?

ADR is the alternative way to settle disputes about .eu domain names. Most people choose to settle their disputes via ADR because it is generally faster and more convenient than a regular court proceeding.

ADR cases:

  • Are overseen by the Czech Arbitration Court (CAC), an independent body in Prague, the Czech Republic
  • Are conducted online and by email, so you will not need to travel
  • Are resolved by independent panellists, not judges. The panellists are often intellectual property experts
  • Are usually held in the language of the domain name holder (as shown in the WHOIS) unless agreed otherwise. As a complainant, you can request a change to another official EU language (except for Gaelic and Maltese, which the CAC does not support). This request may be granted at the panellists' discretion, but certain fees may apply.
  • Take four months to resolve on average.

The ADR procedure is outlined on the official ADR website, eu.adr.eu.

In the following video, EURid Legal Manager Geo Van Langenhove and CAC Member of the Board and ADR.eu Supervisor Petr Hostas discuss the .eu ADR procedure and how to protect your .eu brand online.

When is ADR appropriate?

You can start an ADR procedure against a .eu domain name holder if you believe that:

  1. You have a prior right to the domain name. For example, you hold a trademark on the name.
  2. The current holder registered or uses the name for speculative or abusive purposes.

ADR costs

Costs vary depending on the number of panellists you select and the number of registrations you dispute. For a complete list of fees, please see eu.adr.eu.

What happens after the ADR?

If you win your case:

If you are eligible to register .eu domain names, the domain name’s registration will be transferred to you after a 30-day appeal period.

If you are not eligible to register .eu domain names, the registration will be deleted and the name will be made available for registration again after a 40-day quarantine period.

If you lose your case:

ADR rulings are legally binding, unless you, as a losing party, choose to appeal the decision through a conventional court of law within 30 calendar days.

For more information on the ADR procedure, please see the FAQ section on eu.adr.eu.