Registrar account vs. whois data

we transferred a domain from my registrar (dotster) to my clients registrar (godaddy)
the client is now stalling (3 months) to pay his website development bill (US$1200 approx.)
however, he forgot to update the WHOIS data which still has my name, address, telephone
and most importantly EMAIL for all 3 contacts!
he did however put a LOCK on the domain via his godaddy account.

am i still the legal owner if my details are in the WHOIS?
is there any way for me to transfer the domain back to my registrar?
i.e. by unlocking the domain without access to the godaddy account?

Transferring domains usually requires an action from the new registrar (you initiating it) and an action from the old registrar (unlock, respond to an email, etc). Short answer is without access to that GoDaddy account, probably not.

As to what your legal rights are and if you could convince GoDaddy to let you into it… I have no idea. Might depend more on who the GoDaddy account itself is registered to, I don’t know.

Edit: I’m aware the horse is out of the barn, now, but for your future endeavors - excepting one client of mine that still funnels me subcontracts now and then who I trust, I never provide a finished site without any controls on it until payment is complete anymore. Because of this situation. I always retain some way to shut the site back down and/or reclaim the files - delivery isn’t “complete” until I’m paid. It’s not to be a hard*** it’s just… I’m one guy and I don’t have a collections department or the time or energy to go to court, so, there it is.

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