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INTA Bulletin: CHILE: New Regulations for .CL Domains Get Global Brands’ Attention

15 January, 2014

Contributor: Rodrigo Velasco-Alessandri, Alessandri & Compañía, Santiago

Verifier: Francisco Silva, Silva & Cia., Santiago

Both are members of the INTA Bulletin Law & Practice—Latin America & the Caribbean Subcommittee.

NIC Chile, the local registry for the .CL country code top-level domain, has implemented new policies and dispute-resolution procedures, effective as of December 2013. Moving toward harmonization with global practices, the entity has opened the door to new registrars to enter the market and switched from multiple (disputed) applications to standard single domain name registrations, immediately assigned upon payment of registration fees.Only brand owners and any third parties affected by a .CL domain name will be entitled to initiate cancellation actions, the effects of which may differ depending on the scenario. New policies distinguish a regular “best interest” cancellation action, filed within 30 days following the registration of the domain name objected to, and a special cancellation action based on the alleged “abusive” nature of the domain, the filing of which is not subject to a deadline or fixed term. Cancellation under the latter procedure is similar to the remedy available under the UDRP (Uniform Domain-Name Dispute-Resolution Policy) and may be enforced based on either “abusive use” or “abusive registration.” These new grounds go further than basic deceitful similarity between the domain and a mark or name, and may be based on any form of expression in which the claimant holds precedent rights.The new uniform local dispute-resolution procedure is also intended to put an end to procedural differences, which in practice have allowed any appointed NIC Chile arbitrator to establish them freely in each particular case. NIC arbitrators’ fees have been standardized at US $1,000–$2,000 depending on the number of domains involved. This is similar to WIPO’s standard UDRP practices.

Also introduced were a number of transitory provisions, which are intended to give continuity to the system and prior local dispute-resolution procedures. These apply to all disputes that began prior to December 2013.

The long-awaited debut of online arbitration for .CL domain name disputes, and the implementation of new electronic records that may be accessed by the arbitrator and by counsel for both parties, are also positive developments.

Although every effort has been made to verify the accuracy of items in the INTA Bulletin, readers are urged to check independently on matters of specific concern or interest.

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