Ferrari's work cited in three foreign supreme court decisions

The work of Franco Ferrari, Inge Rennert Distinguished Visiting Professor of Law and a professor at the Faculty of Law, University of Verona, has been cited in recent decisions rendered by the supreme courts of Austria, Germany, and Switzerland. Ferrari, who will return to NYU Law in Spring 2010, is a scholar of world trade and the U.N. Sales Convention, which governs more than two-thirds of global trade.

On April 2, 2009, the Austrian Supreme Court was faced with deciding whether the U.N. Sales Convention, which is in force in the United States and more than 70 countries, can be implicitly excluded by the parties to contracts for the sale of international goods. Taking a position that conflicts with U.S. case law, the court held that an implicit exclusion is permissible. In its holding, the court cited a paper comment that Franco wrote in Schlechtriem and Schwenzer's Commentary on the Uniform UN Sales Law (fourth edition, 2005).

"Although the full impact of the decision is still being assessed, it is possible to state already that the decision opens the door to forum shopping," Ferrari said.

On April 22, 2009, the German Supreme Court resolved an issue of jurisdiction arising from a contract for the international sale of goods containing reference to a specific international commercial term. In deciding that the insertion of international commercial terms may affect jurisdiction only in certain circumstances, the German Supreme Court relied on Ferrari's paper, "Remarks on the Autonomous Interpretation of the Brussels I Regulation, in Particular of the Concept 'Place of Delivery' Under Article 57(1)(b) and the Vienna Sales Convention."

On May 18, 2009, the Swiss Supreme Court addressed the scope of the U.N. Sales Convention by deciding that the convention does not govern the statute of limitations. The court cited Ferrari's work in Schlechtriem and Schwenzer's Commentary in rendering its decision.

Posted on August 13, 2009