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Uniform Law for International Sales under the 1980 United Nations Convention

3rd edition (1999)

John O. Honnold

Table of Contents

Dedication
Preface
Index

CASE-LAW: BIBLIOGRAPHY
       A. Case-law; Discovery Tools
       B. Bibliographic Resources; Books and Reports
       C. Conventions; Statutes
       D. Periodicals: Abbreviations
       E. Legislative History of the Convention
I.   OVERVIEW Section number

CHAPTER 1. THE 1980 CONVENTION: A BRIEF INTRODUCTION

       A. Primary Role of the Contract. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .       2
       B. Major Contours of the Convention . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .       3
       C. Development of the Convention . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .       4

            (1) Origins: The 1964 Hague Conventions . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .

      4
            (2) Worldwide Sponsorship: UNCITRAL . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .       5
                  (a) The Commission: Structure and Working Methods . . . . . . . . . .       6
                  (b) The Representatives. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .       7
                  (c) The Secretariat. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .       8

             (3) UNCITRAL and a New Convention. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .

      9
             (4) The Diplomatic Conference. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .       10
CHAPTER 2. SALIENT FEATURES OF THE 1980 CONVENTION
       A. Scope of the Convention . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .       12
       B. Interpretation of the Convention . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .       16
       C. Formation of the Contract: Part II of the Convention. . . . . . . . . . . . . . .       22
       D. The Sale of Goods: Part III of the Convention . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .       23
       E. An Invisible Gain: The Omission of "Awesome Relics". . . . . . . . . . . . . .       30

II.   COMMENTARY

PART I: SPHERE OF APPLICATION AND GENERAL PROVISIONS       35
CHAPTER I: SPHERE OF APPLICATION
ARTICLE 1:  Basic rules on applicability: Internationality; Relation to Contracting State . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .       39
ARTICLE 2. Exclusions from the Convention. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .       49
ARTICLE 3. Goods to be manufactered; Services . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .       57
ARTICLE 4. Validity; Property interests of third persons . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .       62

ARTICLE 5. Death or personal injury; "Product liability". . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .

      71
ARTICLE 6. The contract and the Convention. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .       74
CHAPTER II: GENERAL PROVISIONS
ARTICLE 7. Interpretation of the Convention . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .       85
ARTICLE 8. Interpretation of statements or conduct . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .       106
ARTICLE 9. Usages and practices applicable to contract. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .       112
ARTICLE 10. Definition of "place of business". . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .       123
ARTICLE 11. Domestic formal requirements. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .       126
ARTICLE 12. Declaration preserving domestic formal requirements. . . . . . . . .       128

ARTICLE 13. Telegram and telex as a "writing". . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .

      130
PART II: FORMATION OF THE CONTRACT
ARTICLE 14. Criteria for an offer. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .       133
ARTICLE 15. When offer becomes effective: prior withdrawal. . . . . . . . . . . . .       138
ARTICLE 16. Revocability of offer . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .       139

ARTICLE 17. Rejection of offer followed by acceptance . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .

      152
ARTICLE 18. Acceptance: time and manner . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .       157
ARTICLE 19. "Acceptance" with modifications . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .       165
ARTICLE 20. Offeror’s time-limits for acceptance. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .       171
ARTICLE 21. Late acceptances: response by offeror. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .       172
ARTICLE 22. Withdrawal of acceptance. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .       177

ARTICLE 23. Effect of acceptance: time of conclusion of contract . . . . . . . . . .

      178
ARTICLE 24. When communication "reaches" the addressee. . . . . . . . . . . . . .       179
PART III: SALE OF GOODS
CHAPTER I: GENERAL PROVISIONS
ARTICLE 25. Definition of "fundamental breach". . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .       181
ARTICLE 26. Notice of avoidance. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .       187
ARTICLE 27. Delay or error in communications . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .       188
ARTICLE 28. Requiring performance and the rules of the forum . . . . . . . . . . .       191

ARTICLE 29. Modification of contract; requirement of a writing . . . . . . . . . . .

      200
CHAPTER II: OBLIGATIONS OF THE SELLER
ARTICLE 30. Summary of seller’s obligations. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .       206
SECTION I:  DELIVERY OF THE GOODS AND HANDING OVER OF DOCUMENTS
ARTICLE 31. Place for delivery . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .       207
ARTICLE 32. Shipping arrangements . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .       212
ARTICLE 33. Time for delivery. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .       216

ARTICLE 34. Documents relating to the goods . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .

      217
SECTION II: CONFORMITY OF THE GOODS AND THIRD-PARTY CLAIMS
ARTICLE 35. Conformity of the goods . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .       222
ARTICLE 36. Damage to goods: effect on conformity . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .       241
ARTICLE 37. Cure up to the date for delivery. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .       244
ARTICLE 38. Time for examining the goods . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .       249
ARTICLE 39. Notice of lack of conformity . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .       254
ARTICLE 40. Seller’s knowledge of non-conformity . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .       254
ARTICLE 44. Excuse for failure to notify. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .       254
ARTICLE 41. Third-party claims to goods . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .       262

ARTICLE 42. Third-party claims based on a patent or other intellectual property

      267
ARTICLE 43. Notice of third-party claim . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .       271
ARTICLE 44. (See discussion combined with Arts. 39 and 40, at §261) . . . . .
SECTION III:  REMEDIES FOR BREACH OF CONTRACT BY THE SELLER
ARTICLE 45. A round-up of remedies available to buyer . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .       275
ARTICLE 46. Buyer’s right to compel performance . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .       279

ARTICLE 47. Buyer’s notice fixing additional final period for performance . . .

      287
ARTICLE 48. Cure after date for delivery; requests for clarification. . . . . . . . .       292
ARTICLE 49. Buyer’s right to avoid the contract . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .       301
ARTICLE 50. Reduction of the price . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .       309

ARTICLE 51. Non-conformity of part of the goods . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .

      314
ARTICLE 52. Early delivery; excess quantity . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .       318
CHAPTER III: OBLIGATIONS OF THE BUYER
ARTICLE 53. Summary of buyer’s obligations . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .       318
SECTION I: PAYMENT OF THE PRICE
ARTICLE 54. Enabling steps. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .       323
ARTICLE 55. Open-price contracts . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .       324
ARTICLE 56. Net weight . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .       328

ARTICLE 57. Place for payment. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .

      329
ARTICLE 58. Time for payment; inspection of goods. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .       333
ARTICLE 59. Payment due without request. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .       340
SECTION II: TAKING DELIVERY
ARTICLE 60. Buyer’s obligation to take delivery . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .       341
SECTION III:  REMEDIES FOR BREACH OF CONTRACT BY THE BUYER

ARTICLE 61. Remedies available to seller. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .

      344
ARTICLE 62. Seller’s right to compel performance . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .       345
ARTICLE 63. Seller’s notice fixing additional final period for performance . . . .       350
ARTICLE 64. Seller’s right to avoid the contract . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .       353
ARTICLE 65. Seller’s notice supplying missing specifications . . . . . . . . . . . . . .       354
CHAPTER IV: PASSING OF RISK

ARTICLE 66. Loss or damage after risk has passed to buyer. . . . . . . . . . . . . .

      360
ARTICLE 67. Risk when contract involves carriage. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .       363
ARTICLE 68. Sale of goods during transit. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .       372
ARTICLE 69. General residual rules on risk. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .       373
ARTICLE 70. Risk when seller is in breach . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .       379

CHAPTER V: PROVISIONS COMMON TO THE OBLIGATIONS OF THE SELLER AND OF THE BUYER

SECTION I: ANTICIPATORY BREACH AND INSTALMENT CONTRACTS
ARTICLE 71. Suspension of performance . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .       385
ARTICLE 72. Avoidance before date for performance. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .       395
ARTICLE 73. Avoidance in instalment contracts. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .       399

SECTION II: DAMAGES

ARTICLE 74. General rule for measuring damages . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .       403
ARTICLES 75 and 76. Measurement of damages when contract is avoided . .       409
ARTICLE 77. Mitigation of damages . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .       416
SECTION III: INTEREST
ARTICLE 78. Interest on sums in arrears . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .       420
SECTION IV: EXEMPTIONS

ARTICLE 79. Impediment excusing party from damages ("force majeure"). . . .

      423
ARTICLE 80. Failure of performance caused by other party . . . . . . . . . . . . . .       436
SECTION V:  EFFECTS OF AVOIDANCE
ARTICLE 81. Effect of avoidance on obligations: arbitration; restitution . . . . . .       439
ARTICLE 82. Buyer’s inability to return goods in same condition. . . . . . . . . . .       445
ARTICLE 83. Preservation of other remedies . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .       449

ARTICLE 84. Restitution of benefits received . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .

      450
SECTION VI:  PRESERVATION OF THE GOODS
ARTICLE 85. Seller’s duty to preserve goods. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .       454
ARTICLE 86. Buyer’s duty to preserve goods . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .       455
ARTICLE 87. Deposit in warehouse. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .       456

ARTICLE 88. Sale of the goods. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .

      457

PART IV: FINAL PROVISIONS

Introduction to Part IV of the Convention
       A. Overview of Part IV . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .       458
       B. Development of Part IV. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .       459
       C. Discussion of Salient Provisions . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .       461
APPENDICES
       A. Text of Convention
       B. Table of Contracting States
       C. Abbreviations: Judicial and Arbitral Decisions


Pace Law School Institute of International Commercial Law - Last updated February 22, 2005

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