I'm in a situation where I've done a website for a client and the year is up and their annual renewal is due. They've decided they don't want to renew with me, which I don't have a problem with and that they would like to go elsewhere. The trouble is, they owe for the updates and changes they've had throughout the year to which they agreed to pay at the end of the year when we began working together.
They want me to change the IPS tag (it's a .co.uk domain) to their new providers registrar so they can take control of the domain but given that I know the kind of people they are, I don't want to release the domain until all accounts are paid up to date (reasonable, right? If they intend to pay they wouldn't have a problem with this, surely?).
I know the company that they want to swap to and have had bad experiences with them in the past. I fear that they will somehow forcefully try to take hold of the domain, leaving me with absolutely no leverage to get the money I'm owed.
As I understand it, unless a domain is preventing a business from doing business or damaging the company's name, it can't be touched - or am I wrong?
I will not disable the email account associated with the domain, but I may well replace the site (it's a very generic domain) with a small site with content based on the keywords in the domain, so that can no way be construed as damaging, correct?
Is there anything else I can do here to stop any potential forceful takeovers of the domain? I'm not asking for legal advice, just exactly what I can do to prevent being conned by this client.