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CISG CASE PRESENTATION

France 26 June 2001 Supreme Court (Muller Ecole v. Federal Trait) [translation available]
[Cite as: http://cisgw3.law.pace.edu/cases/010626f2.html]

Primary source(s) of information for case presentation: Case text

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Case identification

DATE OF DECISION: 20010626 (26 June 2001)

JURISDICTION: France

TRIBUNAL: Cour de Cassation [Supreme Court]

JUDGE(S): Lemontey, président

CASE NUMBER/DOCKET NUMBER: Q 99-16.118, Arrêt no. 1091 FS-P

CASE NAME: Société Muller Ecole et Bureau v. Société Federal Trait

CASE HISTORY: 1st instance [-]; 2d instance Cour d'appel de Colmar 23 February 1999

SELLER'S COUNTRY: Scotland (plaintiff)

BUYER'S COUNTRY: France (defendant)

GOODS INVOLVED: Paper


Classification of issues present

APPLICATION OF CISG: No [Court held implicit exclusion by parties]

APPLICABLE CISG PROVISIONS AND ISSUES

Key CISG provisions at issue: Article 6

Classification of issues using UNCITRAL classification code numbers:

6A1 [Choice of law: implied exclusion of Convention]

Descriptors: Choice of law

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Editorial remarks

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Citations to case abstracts, texts, and commentaries

CITATIONS TO ABSTRACTS OF DECISION

(a) UNCITRAL abstract: Unavailable

(b) Other abstracts

English: Unilex database <http://www.unilex.info/case.cfm?pid=1&do=case&id=717&step=Abstract>

French: Recueil Dalloz (December 2001) No. 44, 3607

CITATIONS TO TEXT OF DECISION

Original language (French): CISG - France website <http://Witz.jura.uni-sb.de/CISG/decisions/2606012v.htm>; see also Unilex database <http://www.unilex.info/case.cfm?pid=1&do=case&id=717&step=FullText>

Translation (English): Text presented below

CITATIONS TO COMMENTS ON DECISION

English: [2005] Schlechtriem & Schwenzer ed., Commentary on UN Convention on International Sale of Goods, 2d (English) ed., Oxford University Press, Art. 6 para. 14

French: Witz, Recueil Dalloz (December 2001) No. 44, 3607-3614

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Case text (English translation)

Queen Mary Case Translation Programme

Cour de Cassation [Supreme Court], First Civil Chamber

26 June 2001 [Judgment no. 1091 FS-P; Appeal no. 99-16. 118]

Translation [*] by Amy Hornitzky [**]

Edited by Linus Meyer [***]

[...]

[ALLEGATION OF THE APPELLANT]

[Buyer], a French corporation, has approached the Cour de Cassation in order to challenge the judgment in which it has been ordered, according to French domestic sales law, to pay [Seller], Scottish company, for deliveries of paper. [Buyer] alleges that the lower court misapplied the applicable law by not considering the Hague Convention of 15 June 1955 and the Vienna Convention of 11 April 1980 (CISG) ex officio and by misapplying the CISG with respect to the price of the goods and the return of the goods.

[...]

[HOLDING OF THE COUR DE CASSATION]

In view of the fact that the CISG institutes a uniform law on the international sale of goods, applicable in this case by virtue of article 3, subsection 2 of the Hague Convention of 15 June 1955 on the applicable law of sales of an international character of tangible and movable objects, combined with article 1(1)(b) CISG, the CISG constitutes substantive French Law on the international sale of goods; thus a French judge must apply the Vienna Convention of 11 April 1980 unless there is a reservation as to its exclusion, as per article 6 CISG, which is interpreted as allowing parties to tacitly exclude the CISG by abstaining from invoking it before a French judge, and that is what has occurred in this matter.

The ruling of the lower court [which found that the CISG does not apply to this case] is held to be correct.

[...]


FOOTNOTES

* All translations should be verified by cross-checking against the original text. For purposes of this translation, Plaintiff of Scotland is referred to as [Seller] and Defendant of France is referred to as [Buyer].

** Amy Hornitzky has completed her Arts (languages) and Law degrees in Australia. She is currently interning at a law firm in Germany and will commence her LL.M. in the Netherlands in 2008.

*** Linus Meyer has studied law in Osnabrueck, Germany and Lausanne, Switzerland. He was a participant in the 12th and a coach in the 13th Willem C. Vis Moot.

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Pace Law School Institute of International Commercial Law - Last updated May 13, 2008
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