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.EU Domain Registration Post Brexit

Kate Brassington Posted by

As many are no doubt aware, the United Kingdom is due to leave the European Union on 29th March 2019. This affects the eligibility of UK residents to register .eu domains. While the exact position of this is currently unclear, we have been informed by EURid (the European registrar) how domain registration will be affected by any withdrawal agreement, and what to expect depending on the outcome of the negotiation talks.

The UK Government released their own advice on the matter in January, which you can find here – and we suggest that you read this in full as well. In brief, it suggests the best course would be to register an alternative domain for use instead. If you wish to discuss this with us, including reconfiguring any Nublue hosting to use a new domain name, please get in touch as soon as possible so we can start a process of assisting you if required. If you wish to take this course of action, it would be sensible to make this change as early as you can.

Returning to EURid’s scenarios, they advise that the following will occur depending on what happens in the coming weeks:

Scenario 1 – “No Deal” Brexit

In the event of a “no deal” Brexit, the following will come into effect:

  • On 23rd March 2019, existing registrants will be contacted by EURid about the upcoming changes.
  • From 30th March 2019, UK residents will no longer be able to register new European domains.
  • On 30th March 2019, existing registrants will be contacted again by EURid, and will be given the chance to update contact details to an eligible country before 30th May 2019.
  • On 30th May 2019, domains that are not compliant with European guidelines will have their statuses changed to “WITHDRAWN”. The domains will no longer be active, meaning that sites and associated services (such as mail) will not work. The record of the domain will remain in the registry database and may be reactivated if you can prove eligibility.
  • On 30th March 2020, all affected domains will have their statuses updated to “REVOKED”, and will become “AVAILABLE”, meaning they are available again for public registration.

Please be aware that during the two-month period between 30th March 2019 – 30th May 2019:

  • Domains cannot be transferred to a UK registrant.
  • Domains cannot be renewed unless they are compliant and will be WITHDRAWN upon expiry.

Scenario 2 – Transitional period agreed

If a transitional period is agreed (and does not contain specific information relating to European domains), then the following will come into effect:

  • On 23rd December 2020, existing registrants will be contacted by EURid about the upcoming changes.
  • From 1st January 2021, UK residents cannot register new European domains.
  • On 1st January 2021, you will be contacted again by EURid, and will be given the chance to update contact details to an eligible country before 2nd March 2021.
  • On 2nd March 2021, domains that are not compliant with European guidelines will have their statuses changed to “WITHDRAWN”. The domains will no longer be active, meaning that sites and associated services (such as mail) will not work. The record will remain in the registry database and may be reactivated if you can prove eligibility.
  • On 1st January 2022, all affected domains will have their statuses updated to “REVOKED”, and will become “AVAILABLE”, meaning they are available again for public registration.

Please be aware that during the two-month period between 1st January 2021– 2nd March 2021:

  • Domains cannot be transferred to a UK registrant.
  • Domains cannot be renewed unless they are compliant and will be WITHDRAWN upon expiry.

If you do need to make any changes to your registrant information, please let us know and we can update this for you.

For more information, please see EURid’s Brexit notice, which can be found here, or the notice to stakeholders regarding the impact of the UK’s withdrawal on European domain names from the European Commission here.

If you have any questions about this, please do not hesitate to get in touch.