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CISG CASE PRESENTATION

United States 25 January 2005 Federal District Court [Iowa] (Kliff et al. v. Grace Label, Inc.)
[Cite as: http://cisgw3.law.pace.edu/cases/050125u1.html]

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

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Case identification

DATE OF DECISION: 20050125 (25 January 2005)

JURISDICTION: United States

TRIBUNAL: U.S. District Court, Southern District of Iowa, Central Division [federal court of 1st instance]

JUDGE(S): Unavailable

CASE NUMBER/DOCKET NUMBER: 4:02-CV-30538-RAW

CASE NAME: Kliff et al. v. Grace Label, Inc.

CASE HISTORY: For related cases, see Mexico proceedings dated 3 October 2006, 21 November 2006, 13 March 2007 and 22 March 2007

SELLER'S COUNTRY: United States (plaintiff)

BUYER'S COUNTRY: United States (defendant)

GOODS INVOLVED: Trading cards


Case abstract

UNITED STATES: U.S. [Federal] District Court, Southern District of Iowa
Grace Label, Inc. v. Kliff, 25 January 2005

Case law on UNCITRAL texts (CLOUT) abstract no. 697

Reproduced with permission of UNCITRAL

Abstract prepared by Peter Winship, National Correspondent

A buyer with its place of business in California (USA) agreed with a seller with its place of business in Iowa (USA) to purchase foil trading cards bearing the likeness of a famous pop music star. The buyer purchased the cards for resale to a sub-buyer in Mexico that planned to include the cards in snack food packaging. The buyer rejected the cards because they became malodorous when they came in contact with food. The seller sued to recover the price of the cards. As part of its response, the buyer argued that the CISG governed the contract dispute because the seller was to ship the cards directly to the sub-buyer in Mexico.

The issue before the court was whether the CISG governed when the goods sold are to be shipped to a foreign country but the seller and buyer have their places of business in the same country. Citing art. 1(1) CISG, the court concluded that shipment of the goods to a foreign country is irrelevant for the purposes of determining whether the Convention applied. Therefore, the Court retained the CISG not applicable and that, being the contract at hand a contract for the sale of goods, the US Uniform Commercial Code would apply.

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Classification of issues present

APPLICATION OF CISG: No. The sole reference to the CISG is: "[Plaintiff] Kliff suggests that because the contract in question calls for the manufacture of goods in the United States for delivery in Mexico it may be governed by the United Nations Convention on Contracts for the International Sale of Goods ("CISG"). The Court does not believe CISG is applicable. It expressly 'applies to contracts of sale of goods between parties whose places of business are in different States.' Referring to different countries. 15 U.S.C.App., Art. 1(1). See Asante Technologies, Inc. v. PMC-Sierra, Inc., 164 F.Supp.2d 1142, 1147 & n.4 (N.D.Cal.2001). The contract was solely between two United States concerns with places of business in the United States. It provided for the shipment of the goods to Barcel in Mexico, but Barcel was not a party to the contract. As a contract for the sale of goods, the Uniform Commercial Code applies. The purchaser was a California proprietorship and the Seller an Iowa corporation."

APPLICABLE CISG PROVISIONS AND ISSUES

Key CISG provisions at issue: Article 1(1)

Classification of issues using UNCITRAL classification code numbers:

1B [Relation to Contracting State]

Descriptors: Scope of Convention

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Editorial remarks

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Citations to other abstracts, case texts and commentaries

CITATIONS TO OTHER ABSTRACTS OF DECISION

Unavailable

CITATIONS TO TEXT OF DECISION

Original language (English): 355 F.Supp.2d 965 (S.D.Iowa Jan 25, 2005)

Translation: Unavailable

CITATIONS TO COMMENTS ON DECISION

English: Keith A. Rowley, "The Convention on the International Sale of Goods", in: Hunter ed., Modern Law of Contracts, Thomson/West (03/2007) § 23:7

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Pace Law School Institute of International Commercial Law - Last updated January 9, 2008
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