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Article 5. Death or Personal Injury

TEXT OF ARTICLE 5

This Convention does not apply to the liability of the seller for death or personal injury caused by the goods to any person.


OUTLINE OF ISSUES

Reproduced with permission of UNCITRAL

5A Exclusion of claims based on death or personal injury

5A1 Domestic law unaffected

5A2 Legal effect of domestic labels

5A21 Applicability of Convention to "product liability"


DESCRIPTORS

Scope of Convention ; Death or personal injury


CASE ANNOTATIONS: UNCITRAL DIGEST CASES

UNCITRAL cites two cases in its Digest of Art. 5 case law:

* Switzerland 26 April 1995 Handelsgericht [Commercial Court] Zürich 5A [translation available]

* Germany 2 July 1993 Oberlandesgericht [Appellate Court] Düsseldorf 5A21 [translation available]

Added Art. 5 citation:

Slovak Republic 1 February 2007 Regional Court Bratislava (E.W.G. v. Ing. R.K.) [translation available]


UNCITRAL CASE DIGEST

The UNCITRAL Digest of case law on the United
Nations Convention on the International Sale of Goods
[*]

A/CN.9/SER.C/DIGEST/CISG/5 [8 June 2004]
Reproduced with the permission of UNCITRAL


ARTICLE 5

         This Convention does not apply to the liability of the seller for death or personal injury caused by the goods to any person.                  


DIGEST OF ARTICLE 5 CASE LAW

1. Pursuant to this provision, the Convention does not deal with liability for death or personal injury caused by the goods to any person,[1] independently from whether the injured party is the buyer or any third party. Consequently, national law applies to this issue.

2. Since liability for death or personal injury “to any person” is excluded from the Convention’s scope of application, it was suggested that the buyer’s claims for pecuniary loss resulting from a claim against the buyer for personal injury caused by the goods should be outside the Convention as well. In one case, however, a court applied the Convention to that kind of claims.[2]

3. Liability for damage caused to property is not excluded by article 5.[3] Unlike under some legal systems, however, claims based on damage to property caused by the goods require the seller to have been notified within the reasonable time period referred to in article 39.[4] Where the damage to property is not “caused by the goods”, as in the case where the buyer’s property is damaged upon delivery of the goods bought, the liability issue will have to be settled on the basis of applicable domestic law.


FOOTNOTES

* The present text was prepared using the full text of the decisions cited in the Case Law on UNCITRAL Texts (CLOUT) abstracts and other citations listed in the footnotes. The abstracts are intended to serve only as summaries of the underlying decisions and may not reflect all the points made in the digest. Readers are advised to consult the full texts of the listed court and arbitral decisions rather than relying solely on the CLOUT abstracts.

[Citations to cisgw3 case presentations have been substituted [in brackets] for the case citations provided in the UNCITRAL Digest. This substitution has been made to facilitate online access to CLOUT abstracts, original texts of court and arbitral decisions, and full text English translations of these texts (available in most but not all cases). For citations UNCITRAL had used, go to <http://www.uncitral.org/english/clout/digest_cisg_e.htm>.]

1. See CLOUT case No. 196 [SWITZERLAND Handelsgericht [Commercial Court] Zürich 26 April 1995, available online at <http://cisgw3.law.pace.edu/cases/950426s1.html>] (see full text of the decision).

2. See CLOUT case No. 49 [GERMANY Oberlandesgericht [Appellate Court] Düsseldorf 2 July 1993, available online at <http://cisgw3.law.pace.edu/cases/930702g1.html>] (see full text of the decision).

3. See CLOUT case No. 196 [SWITZERLAND Handelsgericht [Commercial Court] Zürich 26 April 1995, available online at <http://cisgw3.law.pace.edu/cases/950426s1.html>].

4. See CLOUT case No. 196 [SWITZERLAND Handelsgericht [Commercial Court] Zürich 26 April 1995, available online at <http://cisgw3.law.pace.edu/cases/950426s1.html>].


Pace Law School Institute of International Commercial Law - Last updated December 15, 2008
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