The aim of the course is to provide the students with knowledge on the basic principles of contract law, as set forth in the various drafts on the unification of contract law in Europe, which derive from European law legislation on the one hand, and from comparative analysis of the law of national legal systems on the other hand. Students will also acquire knowledge on the UN Convention on Contracts for the International Sale of Goods (CISG). Students who attend the course successfully should be able to discuss contract law questions (using correct terminology) and evaluate alternative regulations on contract law issues, while they will be also acquainted on all current developments in the field.
Course Content (Syllabus)
The course consists of three parts:
In the introductory part, the student will be acquainted with the history of the discussion on the unification of Contract Law in Europe as well as with the debate on its importance.
The first main part (general part) deals with fundamental issues on the conclusion and performance of contracts (such as pre-contractual liability, mistake, misrepresentation and fraud, unfair clauses, remedies in case of breach of contract and unforeseen change of circumstances). The analysis relies both on comparative law and on EU legislation on relevant issues. This provides a solid basis in order to proceed critically to the approach adopted in the Principles of European Contract Law (PECL) and in the Draft Common Frame of Reference (DCFR). Brief reference is also made to the Unidroit Principles of International Commercial Contracts 2010.
The second main part (general part) is dedicated to the UN Convention on Contracts for the International Sale of Goods (CISG)discusses special Sales Law issues. The analysis is enriched with reference to the Proposal for a Regulation on a Common European Sales Law.
Additional bibliography for study
1. von Bar, Christian/Eric Clive (eds), Draft Common Frame of Reference (Full Edition). Principles, Definitions and Model Rules of European Private Law, Vol 1-3, Munich: Sellier, 2009
2. Beale, Hugh/Bénédicte Fauvarque-Cosson/Jacobien Rutgers/Denis Tallon/Stefan Vogenauer, Cases, Materials and Text on Contract Law, Oxford: Hart Publishing, 2010
3. Fauvarque-Cosson, Bénédicte/Denis Mazeaud, European Contract Law: Materials for a Common Frame of Reference Sellier Munich 2008
4. Kadner, Graziano Thomas, Comparative contract law: cases, materials and exercises, Basingstoke: Palgrave Macmillan 2009
5. Lando, Ole/Hugh Beale, Principles of European Contract Law, Dordrecht/Boston: Nijhoff, 2000
6. K. Zweigert/H. Kötz, An Introduction to Comparative Law (transl. T. Weir), 3rd ed. Oxford: Carendon Press 1998
7. Nils Jansen/Reinhard Zimmermann (eds.), Commentaries on European Contract Law, Oxford 2018
Further bibliography will be provided for special issues.