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CISG CASE PRESENTATION

Spain 2 March 2000 Appellate Court Granada (Frozen chicken legs case) [translation available]
[Cite as: http://cisgw3.law.pace.edu/cases/000302s4.html]

Primary source(s) of information for case presentation: CISG-Spain and Latin America website

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Case identification

DATE OF DECISION: 20000302 (2 March 2000)

JURISDICTION: Spain

TRIBUNAL: Audiencia Provincial [Appellate Court] de Granada

JUDGE(S): Sr. D. Juan Francisco Ruiz-Rico Ruiz

CASE NUMBER/DOCKET NUMBER: 546/1999

CASE NAME: Unavailable

CASE HISTORY: 1st instance Juzgado de Primera Instancia no. 8 de Granada 23 April 1999

SELLER'S COUNTRY: Spain (plaintiff)

BUYER'S COUNTRY: United States (defendant)

GOODS INVOLVED: Frozen hen and chicken legs for paella


Case abstract

SPAIN: Audiencia Provincial de Granada 2 March 2000

Case law on UNCITRAL texts (CLOUT) abstract no. 606

Reproduced with permission of UNCITRAL

Abstract prepared by María del Pilar Perales Viscasillas, National Correspondent

The dispute arose out of a contract between a Spanish seller and an American buyer who wanted to import the goods, consisting in "frozen hen and chicken legs for paella", in Ukraine. The buyer (hereinafter "the plaintiff") claimed that the seller had breached the contract, since the goods were in a state that made them not fit for their consumption and commercialization.

The Court of Appeal, reversing the decision of the lower judge, deemed the CISG applicable to the case, since Spain and the United States were both parties to the Convention (Article 1(b) CISG).

The Court first considered that the claimant had failed to demonstrate that the goods supplied differed from those inspected by one of his representatives. As a matter of fact, the required health certificates, issued by the competent veterinary after the compulsory controls, certified that the elaboration of the goods, their storing and loading conformed to the health rules in force.

The Court then took into consideration the provision of article 35 CISG which defines the standards for determining whether the goods conform to the contract. According to this provision, the goods conform to the contract, among others, when they are fit for the purposes for which goods of the same description would ordinarily be used and for any particular purpose expressly or impliedly made known to the seller at the time of the conclusion of the contract. Consequently, the seller is not responsible for any lack of conformity of the goods of which the buyer knew or could not have been unaware when the contract was concluded.

With this regard, the fact that in Ukraine the import and distribution of products with the characteristics of those purchased by the plaintiff were not allowed by law, did not mean that the goods were in bad condition or not fit for the agreed purpose. The court stated that it was the plaintiff's responsibility to ascertain which characteristics the goods needed to have in order to enter the country. Furthermore, the buyer had the opportunity to inspect a sample of the goods and did not raise any objections as to their nonconformity to the sanitary requirements in the country of destination.

Thus, the Court ruled in favour of the respondent and rejected the plaintiff's claim.

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Classification of issues present

APPLICATION OF CISG: Yes

APPLICABLE CISG PROVISIONS AND ISSUES

Key CISG provisions at issue: Articles 25 ; 35 ; 49

Classification of issues using UNCITRAL classification code numbers:

35A ; 35B [Conformity of goods: quality, quantity and description required by contract; Requirements implied by law]

Descriptors: Conformity of goods

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Editorial remarks

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Citations to other abstracts, case texts and commentaries

CITATIONS TO OTHER ABSTRACTS OF DECISION

English: Unilex database <http://www.unilex.info/case.cfm?pid=1&do=case&id=889&step=Abstract>

Spanish: CISG-Spain and Latin America website <http://www.uc3m.es/cisg/respan15.htm>; Unilex database <http://www.unilex.info/case.cfm?pid=1&do=case&id=889&step=FullText>

CITATIONS TO TEXT OF DECISION

Original language (Spanish): CISG-Spain and Latin America website <http://www.uc3m.es/cisg/sespan15.htm>; see also Aranzadi database and El Derecho database

Translation (English): CISG-Spain and Latin America website <http://www.uc3m.es/cisg/trad15.htm>

CITATIONS TO COMMENTS ON DECISION

English: Henschel, The Conformity of Goods in International Sales, Forlaget Thomson (2005) 205

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Pace Law School Institute of International Commercial Law - Last updated June 7, 2006
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