South Korean court blocked transfer of domain after UDRP; Citi files suit in the United States.
Last September a National Arbitration Forum panel ruled that Citigroup should get the domain name CityCard.com. [Update: the court entered a default judgment for Citigroup and the domain has been transferred.]
But the owner of the domain name sued in South Korea court to block the transfer.
Now Citigroup has filed an in rem action against the CityCard.com domain name in U.S. court (pdf).
In its suit, Citigroup claims:
…the South Korean court did not adjudicate Plaintiff’s rights under U.S. law or the U.S. Trademark Act, namely the ACPA. As a result, the South Korean court’s rulings are not relevant to Plaintiff’s above-captioned in rem Complaint seeking injunctive relief under the ACPA.
Here’s what makes this interesting to me.
When Citigroup filed its UDRP against the owner of CityCard.com, it most likely agreed to jurisdiction in South Korea should the respondent in the case file a lawsuit over the domain name. Now the company is upset over what that court ruled because it wasn’t based on U.S. law, so it’s filing an in rem action in the U.S.
Perhaps there’s more legal nuance to this, and I welcome any attorneys to chime in.