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Multi-year Domain Payment

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Hi all

When we make a multi-year domain registration prepayment, does the registrar concerned have to pay $6 x n (n=no. of years) to VeriSign/Network Solutions right away, or just pay $6 at first?

If a domain name is newly registered at So-So registrar (ICANN accredited) for 10 years, does So-So pay $60 to VS/NS immediately for all 10 years ("Scenario A"), or just $6 (& then $6 every year upon renewal to VS/NS) ("Scenario B")?

The reason for this question is financial risk. If So-So goes under anytime during the 10 year duration, the balance of the prepayment is at risk if Scenario (B) reflects the accepted practice.

Would appreciate if anyone could shed some light on this matter.

Domain summit 2024


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I don't know the answer, Samantha, but am curious for the same reason. Also who gets to take over management of the customers' names if say-- heaven forbid-- a registrar dropped off the face of the earth, or turned up on America's Most Wanted.

I've answered this one somewhere before - I thought it was here, but...

When you pay a multi-year registration on a domain, your Registrar should pay the Registry on your behalf. Most, but not all do however. You can tell that they did by checking the expiration date in the whois.

If you have registered through a Reseller, and the Reseller should go away, the domain is quite safe, as the Registrar is really responsible for your domain, not the reseller.

The Registrar manages your domain on behalf of the Registry. If a Registrar should simply go under, the Registry would be responsible for your domain. If you look at the way delegated domains have worked in the past, this is exactly what happens when the designated manager for a delegated domain stops doing his job.

What has happened in the past, and what is much more likely to continue to happen in the future, is that an ailing Registrar will sell his domain "properties" to another Registrar as part of his going out of business sale. I expect we see a number of these in the next couple of years as the sub-$8 registrars find out that they can't stay in business at the profit margins they have, and they merge, acquire, are acquired, etc.

You can bet that Verisign will buy up more Registrars in the future - as they still have a large amount of cash even though they are losing money - and I suspect we'll see others as well.

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