Coming Soon: File a UDRP Domain Name Dispute for $250

Arbitration provider wants to offer $250 expedited UDRPs.

[Update: The 250 fee is actually in Euros, and is the panelist’s fee. CAC will also collect a 250 EUR fee, making the minimum fee 500 EUR]. Earlier this month I reported on WIPO’s plans to introduce a fast-track UDRP proceeding. It would cost less and be decided faster than traditional UDRPs. At the time, I predicted that WIPO’s competitors would follow suit because of venue shopping.

It looks like Czech Arbitration Court (CAC), a newer UDRP forum, is jumping on board. It plans to offer expedited hearings for only $250500 EUR.

In order to qualify for an expedited hearing, the complainant must limit arguments to 2,000 words, and the respondent must not file a response.

A comment period is open until December 11. ICANN’s web site has an odd description of what CAC proposes, writing that it is “proposing to amend its Supplemental Rules to provide for an alternative page limit and processing fee for certain UDRP Complaints”.

That seems like a banal description for something that could fundamentally change UDRP and drastically increase the number of cases filed.


    • says

      I think there’s some value in unclogging the UDRP system from the no-brainer cases to give real focus on legitimate respondents. However, it worries me that this is being done on a UDRP-provider-by-provider basis rather than at the ICANN level.

  1. says

    Agreed, Andrew. Did you see that the proposed Expedited Decision is limited to a single panelist? That’s not surprising since most complainants prefer a single panelist to decide these types of cases. The one head is better than three approach.

    Take a look at the CAC cover letter regarding panelist’s discretion, which states, “[t]he panel will have the discretion to reject the Expedited Decision if it would be unfair to decide in this shorter way (INCLUDING IF THERE IS A SUSPICION OF GAMING ON THE PART OF THE COMPLAINANT). Does that mean that panelist will undertake an investigation on his or her own to determine whether the case has no merit? This could actually be a good thing for the domainer but it is not really clear what is meant by “gaming.” One really vague answer is in the CAC Proposed Supplemental Rule 5(A)(c), which states that a number of things can occur to take a case out of the Expedited Decision,including if “it would be unfair or otherwise inappropriate to issue a decision.” That doesn’t help clarify anything, unfortunately. This is something that should be addressed during the comment period.

    • says

      Karen – I found the cover letter interesting. I think it’s too open to interpretation, which is part of the problem today. And really, how much work can we expect a panelist to do for his cut of $250?

  2. says

    Folks should take the time to submit comments to ICANN. My detailed comments are at:

    Basically, this is continued opportunism by the UDRP providers, as “cybersquatting” is a business to them — the more cases the better. They don’t rejoice when there’s less cybersquatting — instead, they try to increase the number of cases by any means, to reduce the due process for registrants.

    Or, if you don’t have time (comment deadline is December 11th, so there’s still a lot of time), read the comments that others submit and endorse the ones you agree with.

  3. says

    Karen: Panelist *do* get paid per complaint. Some of them have made 6-figures over the years from being panelists. If cybersquatting goes down, the number of cases goes down, and the “gravy train” of the “business” of arbitration goes away.

    And as noted in the WSJ article in my detailed comments above regarding NAF arbitration for consumer credit complaints:

    “While telling consumers that it was an impartial arbitrator, NAF worked closely with creditors, the regulator claimed, including drafting claims against consumers.”

    “Former arbitrators, a congressional subcommittee, consumers and government suits are now alleging that NAF has been systematically ruling against consumers for years.”

    “A congressional subcommittee, which began an investigation last year to study the fairness of mandatory arbitration, concluded in July that the current arbitration system is “ripe for abuse.” Arbitration, as “operated by NAF, does not provide protection for those consumers,”
    the committee said.”

    “Before that case, she had ruled in favor of credit-card companies 18 consecutive times, she told the committee. She says she finished several pending NAF cases after she ruled for the card holder, but then wasn’t given more cases. The official reason the NAF gave for canceling more work was scheduling conflicts. But Ms. Bartholet said in an interview that an NAF manager told her she was likely removed because she ruled for the debtor.”

    Thus, panelists who are “fair” towards domain registrants are likely not going to be selected often to make decisions, as it would hurt the amount of “business” that the provider gets. We saw that with eResolution, who left the UDRP business as complainants were using NAF and WIPO more (eResolution was deciding too many cases in favour of domain registrants, deciding against the complainants). That forum shopping needs to be examined by ICANN.

  4. says

    Wait, someone can file a complaint for $250, and I can’t file a response, then a Czechoslovakian being paid a cut of $250 will make a decision? Is it April Fool’s Day today? WTF?

  5. says

    George, I agree that private arbitration companies are in the business of making money. That’s nothing new. Take a look at JAMS Endispute, which has been in business long before the UDRP, WIPO or the NAF. I don’t know where you got the idea that these arbitrators make 6 figure incomes solely by presiding over UDRPs. Ordinarily, arbitrators supplement their incomes presiding on panels and are practicing attorneys or former judges. The WSJ article was about binding arbitration creditor disputes and not UDRP proceedings. Please point me to a reliable source that indicates how much money UDRP panelists make and I will look into it.

  6. says

    “and the respondent must not file a response”

    Andrew – I’m confused on how this process works. So the complainant files a $250 proceeding, but the respondent cannot weigh in? That sounds absurd. I must not be understanding what has been proposed.

    Does the $250 ruling simply determine if the case then goes the full UDRP route?

  7. says

    Karen: In a WIPO cases, the panelist receives $1,000 typically, see:

    Same at NAF:

    There are definitely panelists that have done more than 100 cases over the years. Do a search for “Carolyn Marks Johnson”, for example, at NAF, and there are *963* matches:

    That’s a lot of dough! This is the same Carolyn Marks Johnson from:

  8. Martin says

    @Chris “…then a Czechoslovakian being paid a cut of $250 will make a decision?”

    I think you’ll find that Czechoslovakia ceased to exist in 1992 – you mean ‘a Czech’ Just being picky…! 😉

  9. says


    I am a counsel to the ADR.EU center of the Czech Arbitration Court and I was one of the persons who prepared the Expedited Decision proposal.

    I would like to clarify several issues which repeatedly appear in the discussion:

    1. Our PROPOSED filing fees for Expedited Decision Complaint starts at 500 EUR, not 250 USD. Please look at our proposal as posted on ICANN website.

    2. Our UDRP Panellists will be deciding the ED cases. You can see the list of our Panellists at – all our Panellists are well-known Internet and domain name lawyers.

    3. We have been discussing our proposal with ICANN lawyers for several weeks before the public comments started and we will implement the proposed procedure only after receiving an approval of ICANN. We believe that our proposal is in compliance with UDRP.

    We look forward to further jazzy discussion :o).

  10. says

    The ICA is extremely concerned about the implications of the CAC announcement and the pending rollout of a similar proposal from WIPO. We have just posted extensive comments on these developments at .

    I am pleased to see Mr. Loebl’s statement that the proposed expedited procedure will only be implemented if it receives approval from ICANN. We believe that a dual-track UDRP is a significant policy change that requires GNSO review and ICANN Board approval prior to implementation, and we shall have more to say on that matter shortly.

  11. stu says

    Ahh,i love it,i will be very rich soon,filing all them cases for aged old domains with dud email addresses……….I LOVE IT !

  12. says


    our proposal is not a dual-track UDRP. It is quite simple: in principle, the CAC will have a lower filing fee if the complaint will be short and no response will be filed. The same level of assessment will be applied by the same UDRP panellists. The decision will contain principal arguments.The same time limits and everything will apply. Panellists will have a discretion to require normal filing fee where fair and reasonable.

    The CAC did not follow WIPO in its proposal. We presented our first draft in the end of July. We are obviously pleased that WIPO presented substantially similar concept in Seoul at the ICANN meeting. Similarly as with the electronic UDRP, we try to develop modern UDRP services which would respond to the current needs of Internet environment.

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