Owner cites state regulations for temporary shutdown.
Upstart domain escrow service EscrowDNS.com has temporarily suspended new service, citing state regulations:
EscrowDNS is temporarily ceasing operation of it’s domain name escrow service. Any outstanding transactions will be completed as always, no new transactions will be allowed. Several states have vague or modified escrow laws for Internet companies offering escrow services. For this reason, we will be closing our doors temporarily until all permits and surety bonds are in place. We have strived since the beginning to stand out as a domain name escrow service that cared about your transactions and I feel we have accomplished that mission thus far. When we re-launch we will have a completely new site design with added features and will offer our first month “escrow fee free.” In the meantime, we recommend that you use www.Escrow.com for your domain name escrow transactions. They offer a reliable service and prompt customer support. We would like to thank everyone for their continued support.
Several states have regulations for escrow services, and it would appear that EscrowDNS is getting itself in compliance with state rules. In an interview with Domain Name Wire earlier this year, Escrow.com president Brandon Abbey said regulations can be a hurdle for any new escrow service:
…You will notice that some escrow companies do not offer services in California and Arizona. This is because they do not have the appropriate licenses. These companies are not subject to the same stringent regulations we are. If an unlicensed escrow company were to perform escrows for a California buyer or seller they would be in violation of the Financial Code. The potential penalty is a fine, not to exceed $10,000, imprisoned in county jail for up to a year, put in state prison or punished by both fine and imprisonment. Arizona penalties appear to be just as severe and Idaho also requires an escrow license.
In the 2009 Domain Name Wire Survey, EscrowDNS garnered 5% of the vote for best escrow service despite entering the market late last year.