[arin-ppml] Deceased Companies?

John Curran jcurran at arin.net
Mon Jul 25 15:58:21 EDT 2022

> On 25 Jul 2022, at 3:37 PM, Ronald F. Guilmette <rfg at tristatelogic.com> wrote:
> Not really.  Not in the hypothetical as I described it.  The /24 was originally
> granted on the basis of "need" for an Internet cafe.  Now it is just hosting the
> web sites of George and a couple of his friends.  So maybe only 5 IPv4 addresses
> are being used out of the whole /24 block now.  In short, vastly underutilized.

Underutlization does not (in and of itself) provide a basis for revocation. 

>> So, while it is true that the resources are registered to an entity that no technically longer 
>> exists, they are being utilized by a party that has a credible claim to be the legal successor 
>> to the rights to the address block,
> Now we come to the crux of the matter.
> John, please point me at the specific language in the RSA that grants any sort
> of right or claim to the resource(s) to any entity other than the entity to
> which those reasources were originally assigned.  To put it another way, what
> basis in law do you have for asserting that George automatically inherits some
> rights, titles, or claims to or upon -this- specific asset upon the (legal) death
> of his (former) LLC?  (For the moment, we need not even delve into the various
> possibilities that could clearly arise if it transpired that George's ex-wife
> and/or George's brother-in-law and sister-in-law were in fact the real and only
> beneficial owners of the now defunct LLC, with George himself perhaps having
> owned a grand total of 0% of the LLC at the time of its demise.)

Indeed.  We get such colorful circumstances (multiple parties claiming rights to 
resources in a failed estate), and that’s precisely what bankruptcy courts exist –
however, you omitted such from your example, and I went on what you stated. 

> For now, let just pretend that this is a simple and obvious case where George
> did indeed own 100% of the LLC at the time of the LLC's demise.  Even that
> simplifying assumption does not really help at all to clarify who, if anyone,
> might have some claim to or rights to the /24 after the demise of the LLC.
> (Note:  I myself have an immediate family relative who "owns" a house.  And I am
> that relative's sole legal death beneficiary for ALL of his assets.  But I will
> NOT be getting the house in question, nor even any part of it, when he shuffles
> off this mortal coil because he's got a reverse mortgage on the house, and the
> way those work is that the reverse mortgage company gets the house, and the
> whole house, upon his death.  Because that's what the contract says.)
> So I ask again, where is the justification, either in legal principals or in the
> actual text of the RSA that says that George retains (or obtains) _any_ interest
> in the /24 upon the death of George's LLC?  The way I read the plain language of
> the RSA, all claims, rights, and titles to the /24 must necessarily pass back to
> ARIN upon the death of the LLC, if for no other reason, then at least for the
> obviious reason that "The Holder" no longer exists and thus can no longer pay the
> annual fees.

Wonderful logic.  I’ll note that telecommunications companies routinely consolidate, and 
that it is quite possible that invoices will paid from an account other than one that signed 
the ARIN agreement. (Given how some organizations are about updating their merger 
records, any other position would be irresponsible...) 

> If you seriously believe otherwise, then I for one would be enlightened if you
> would explain the basis for your differing view on this key point.

See above.

>> ARIN's job is to administer the registry for productive use, and it would appear that is what
>> is happening in this case.
> No.  It isn't.  I think that I was clear in my hypothetical, which is not at
> all far fetched, that when the LLC was a real and going concern, it needed, used,
> and most importantly *justified*, to ARIN that it would be using most or all of
> an entire /24.  Now, it's just George and his drinkin' buddies, and they are using
> maybe 5 out of 256 of those IP addresses.
> This is not my personal idea of efficient utilization of scarce resources.  Others
> may of course disagree.

Perhaps (but then again there is a transfer market, and that will result in more efficient 
over the long-term utilization if economically feasible.) 

>> I suspect that the Registration Services Helpdesk would ask that
>> George register TMBBATS as a sole proprietorship, provide an appropriate attestation of 
>> the events, and update the records accordingly. 
> Well, that's a part of my question:  Would they?  When would they?  Why would they?

Yes, RSD would handle accordingly - there is no reason not to, particularly given that the 
address block is presently utilized and there is no other party claiming they hold the rights. 

It is interesting - people alternately accuse ARIN of being hard to satisfy, and then express 
surprise when we go above and beyond to accommodate people attempting to clean up the
registration records of blocks that they requested long ago and have been using since… 

>> Am I to presume you're seeking some other outcome for George? (i.e. given that you are 
>> asking whether ARIN can start rejecting his RSA fee payments?) 
> Yes, you may so presume.  

I look forward to you proposing policy to that effect.  The postulated case would be an Org recovery, 
as per NRPM 8.2.   If you wish to add more exacting criteria to that section, describe the present 
problem as you see it, and the suggested outcome in a policy proposal. 


John Curran
President and CEO
American Registry for Internet Numbers

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