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There are 2 Distinct phases :

  1. The Sunrise Period
    The release of a new gTLD starts with a sunrise period. It is an initial period of at least 30 days, before the gTLD is offered to general public.
    During this period, all Trademark owners who registered to the TMCH can purchase a domain name with this specific gTLD.
    The Sunrise Period is therefore a period of exclusive access to the registration of a new gTLD. This ensures Trademark holders that they can register a domain name including the name of their brand before their competitors, or before any potential cybersquatter.
  3. The Claim Period
    Each Sunrise period is followed by a Claim Service running indefinitely, for which the ICANN sends notifications to warn potential domain name registrants and trademark holders of possible infringement : all domain name registrants receive a warning prior to registering a domain that matches a trademark in the TMCH.
    If the domain name applicant continues to register, the trademark holder will receive notification so they can take appropriate action (see UDRP and URS protection mechanisms).

The 2 phases cannot overlap each other. During the sunrise period, every registrant will be asked to provide their SMD file to prove they registered to the TMCH and are indeed allowed to register before the general release.

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