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France 21 May 1999 Appellate Court Paris (JCP Industrie v. Aris Antrieb)
[Cite as: http://cisgw3.law.pace.edu/cases/990521f1.html]

Primary source(s) of information for case presentation: UNCITRAL abstract; CISG-France website

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Case identification

DATE OF DECISIONS: 19990521 (21 May 1999)


TRIBUNAL: CA Paris [CA = Cour d'appel = Appeal Court]

JUDGE(S): Desgrange, président; Bouche and Savatier, conseillers; Bauduin, greffier


CASE NAME: SA JCP Industrie v. Société Aris Antrieb und Steuerungen GmbH

CASE HISTORY: 1st instance Trib. com. Corbeil 25 October 1996 [affirmed]

SELLER'S COUNTRY: Germany [plaintiff]

BUYER'S COUNTRY: France [defendant]

GOODS INVOLVED: Electronic equipment (servomotors)

Case abstract

FRANCE: Cour d'appel de Paris 21 May 1999

Case law on UNCITRAL texts (CLOUT) abstract no. 314

Reproduced with permission from UNCITRAL

The seller, a German company, delivered electronic parts called "servomotors" to the buyer, a French company, with which it maintained a commercial relationship based on a contract entered into on 30 May 1989. Claiming that the seller was in breach of its contractual obligations, the buyer terminated the contract on 24 May 1995. However, the buyer subsequently requested delivery of goods, for which the seller drew several invoices. The buyer refused to settle the invoices, alleging defects in the goods. The Commercial Court of Paris ruled that the CISG was applicable to the dispute, ordered the buyer to pay the sum, plus interest at the statutory rate as from the date of the formal demand, and dismissed the buyer's counterclaims, which had been based on the defective nature of the goods and the termination of the contractual relationship.

The Court of Appeal upheld the lower-court ruling, stating that "the court has, in this case, rightly applied the provisions of the Vienna Convention of 11 April 1980 on Contracts for the International Sale of Goods, which entered into force on 1 January 1988 and which, for States, such as France and Germany, that had ratified that Convention, serves in place of the Hague Convention of 16 June 1955". According to the French national correspondent, "this reasoning is acceptable subject to the tendentious statement that the CISG serves in place of the Hague Convention on the Law Applicable to International Sales of Goods".

The Court pointed out that "assuming to be correct the fact that the parties had agreed to make their legal relationship subject to German law under the contract entered into by them on 29 May 1989, it has to be concluded that, since the disputed invoices were issued after 20 May 1995, i.e. the date of termination of the contract, whose stipulations could no longer be implemented, the argument put forward by the seller to support the allegation that the buyer's claims are inadmissible since they were time-barred by virtue of the German Civil Code is irrelevant". The Court considered that the buyer had not furnished proof that the measures which the buyer claimed it had had to take at its customers' premises arose from defects in the equipment supplied by the seller, and accordingly dismissed the counterclaim for damages.

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Classification of issues present

APPLICATION OF CISG: Yes [Article 1(1)(a)]


Key CISG provisions at issue: Article 53

Classification of issues using UNCITRAL classification code numbers:

53A [Buyer's obligation to pay price of goods]

Descriptors: Price

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Editorial remarks

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Citations to other abstracts, texts and commentaries


English: Unilex database <http://www.unilex.info/case.cfm?pid=1&do=case&id=379&step=Abstract>


Original language (French): CISG-France website ("http://Witz.jura.uni-sb.de/CISG/decisions/210599v.htm"); Unilex database <http://www.unilex.info/case.cfm?pid=1&do=case&id=379&step=FullText>

Translation: Unavailable


French: Witz, Dalloz, Cahier Droit des Affairs (30 November 2000) No. 42/7007, 442-443

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Pace Law School Institute of International Commercial Law - Last updated May 15, 2002
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