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4th INTERNATIONAL WEEK:
Internet Communication Management
Academic Courses
7-12 April, 2014, University of Economics,
Katowice, Poland
Gloria Esteban de la Rosa
Chair Professor of Private internacional Law
University of Jaén (Spain)
Onlineinternational contracts:
General termsand conditions
E-CommerceDirective
 The question surrounding the formation of a
contract has not been resolved by the
Directive
 Nor the question if this is a Passive or Avtice
Web-Site
Art. 1, 4º
E-CommerceDirective
 This Directive does not establish additional
rules on Private International Law nor does
it deal with the jurisdiction of Courts
Questionsto besolved
 First Question: Absent or Present Parties?
 Second Question: mode os telematic
procurement?
- Pressing the icon on the computer screen
- Sending e-mail?
Answer:
 The answer to the
question on whether
the electronic contract
has been executed may
differ in response to
the mode of telematic
procurement …
 …To be taken under
diverse consideration
in each legislative
system (between
present or absent), in
addition to the various
legal responses issued
for each regulation.
In thecaseof Spain
 Transposition by the Law
on Information Society
Services and Electronic
Commerce (34/2002, 11th
July)
 Absent Parties
 Solution of
understanding a
contract to be
concluded from the
moment in which the
recipient or consumer
of an online offer
manifests their
conformity
PrivateInternational Law
 Regulation 593/2008 on the Law applicable
to contractual obligations (Rome I)
 This Regulation does not necessarilly
solve the issue of the moment from which
it can be considered that there is a
contract in the case of contracts
concludes by electronic means
Solutionsgiven by theDEC
 The exact time of birth of the electronic
contract still needs to be determined under
the rules of each legal system
Lack of regulation
 Directive doesn’t vary the criteria used in
their respective legal systems
 Directive doesn’t determine the moment a
contract is formulated when made by
electronic means
Why??
 Difficulties that this ascertainement implies,
given the diversity of solutions present in
the Member States
Art. 11 of DEC
 Does not specify the
time and and place of
completion of an
electronic contract
 But, it obliges the
service provider to
acknowledge the
Receipt of the
recipient’s order
without undue delay
Consequently
 A contract is not valid if the final
confirmation called for art. 11, 1, a) of ECD
does not exist
Receipt
 The mere fact of the document being
deposited in the recipient’s email in-box
signifies Receipt
E-Commerce Directive:
Model of electronic contract in
three phases
 First: is that of an entrepreneur offering
through electronic means (e.g., Virtual Store)
the sale of goods or offer of services
(contractual offer)
Second Phase
 The second is that of a consumer (or other
entrepreneur) who places an order
throught electronic means (acceptance of
offer)
Third Phase
 Third Phase is that where the first
entrepreneur must send Acknowledgement of
receipt of the acceptance sent by tge
consumer (or second entrepreneur)
But
 There is no obligation to include these three phases
in electronic contracts between Member States
 In fact, when dealing with contracts that are not
celebrated between consumers, and if all parties
are in express agreement, the ACK of Receipt can
be omitted
General Terms and Conditions
On line Contracts
 Express a rationalisation phenomemon og the
contract in economic terms:
- Reduction of costs in the negotiation
- Speed in the provision of services
 Online International Contracts are carried
out under the General Terms and Conditions
Virtual Store
 By clicking on the corresponding website
icon, clients expresses, in principle,
acceptance
Problemsof
irreflexivecontracting
 Specific horizontal projection regulations, for
warning consumers and clients of the
existence of unfair terms of the on line
contract sep-up for Virtual Store
 This regulation act againts abusive
conditions
Directive93/13/CEE
 On unfair terms in
consumer contracts
Directive93/13/CEE
 UnfairTerm. A contractual term which has
not been individually negotiated shall be
regarded as unfair if, contrary to the
requirement of good faith, it causes a
significant imbalance in the parties' rights
and obligations arising under the contract, to
the detriment of the consumer
2 Different Questions
 Control of the contract’s content (Abusive
Terms)
 Incorporation (of General Terms and
Conditions) to the contract
Good faith
 General Principle
in Contract Law
 Control of the contract
content according to
the existence of a
significant imbalance
in relation with the
bargaining power of
parties
Control of AbusiveTerms
and Conditions
 According to Spanish
Law: Law 7/1998 is
applicable to contracts:
- That are subject to
Spanish Law, or
- When the adherent has
issued its business
declaration in the
Spanish territory
 Choice of Law Clause
Incorporation of General Termsand
Conditions
 When does it take place?? According to the
legal system applicable to the General Terms
and Conditions
 Which one? Choice of Law Clause
I.E.
 Under the spanish regulation “in case of
telephone or electronic contracting, it is
necessary to state (…) acceptance of each and
every provision of the contract, wihout the
need for the conventional signature. In this
case, the consumer will be sent written
justification of the recently made contract
immediately, where the terms and conditions
will be stated therein” (art. 5, 4º)
To sum up:
 First step: once the Client’s acceptance to the
general terms and conditions of the contract
formalised through an Online Store has taken
place, one must verify if they have all been
incorporated, pursuant to the legal system
governing the said terms and conditions
Subsequently:
 It must be determined if the international
online contract has born according to the
applicable regulations thereto, and
specifically, the criteria set by said legal
system with respect to distance contracts, in
addition to the requirements for its
formalization
Do you remember?
 Present Parties?
 Absent Parties?
 Usual rules
 Special rules for
Distance Contracts
Choice of Law Clause
 The interpretation and performance of this
contract are governed by Spanish law (i.e.)
Documents forpreparing
the Activity
 G. Esteban & E. Gómez, Offer and Acceptance in active and
passive Websites (Draft)
 E. Gómez, International Electronic contracting: Offer and
Acceptance, European Scientific Journal, vol. 8, nº 28
 E. Gómez, Regulation of Electronic Contracts in the
European Community, European International Journal of
Science and Technology, 2013, vol. 2, nº 8
 E. Gómez, The formation of Electronic Contract: EU
Regulation, ICT Law, 2013
 G. Esteban, Internationalization of Spanish Olive Oil Sector
through the use of a Virtual Store, International Journal of
Business Management, 2014
Look for answers
to theseQuestions:
 What says the E-Commerce Directive about the
moment of birth of the electronic contract?
 Which is the legal system that decide if the
content of the web-site is an offer?
 When could we consider the acceptance in cases
of international electronic contracts in according
to the European Law?
 What is the meaing of General Terms and
Conditions of Contracts?
 How it is decided its incorporation to the
international contract?

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On line international contracts general terms(2)

  • 1. 4th INTERNATIONAL WEEK: Internet Communication Management Academic Courses 7-12 April, 2014, University of Economics, Katowice, Poland Gloria Esteban de la Rosa Chair Professor of Private internacional Law University of Jaén (Spain)
  • 3.
  • 4.
  • 5.
  • 6.
  • 7. E-CommerceDirective  The question surrounding the formation of a contract has not been resolved by the Directive  Nor the question if this is a Passive or Avtice Web-Site
  • 8. Art. 1, 4º E-CommerceDirective  This Directive does not establish additional rules on Private International Law nor does it deal with the jurisdiction of Courts
  • 9. Questionsto besolved  First Question: Absent or Present Parties?  Second Question: mode os telematic procurement? - Pressing the icon on the computer screen - Sending e-mail?
  • 10. Answer:  The answer to the question on whether the electronic contract has been executed may differ in response to the mode of telematic procurement …  …To be taken under diverse consideration in each legislative system (between present or absent), in addition to the various legal responses issued for each regulation.
  • 11. In thecaseof Spain  Transposition by the Law on Information Society Services and Electronic Commerce (34/2002, 11th July)  Absent Parties  Solution of understanding a contract to be concluded from the moment in which the recipient or consumer of an online offer manifests their conformity
  • 12. PrivateInternational Law  Regulation 593/2008 on the Law applicable to contractual obligations (Rome I)  This Regulation does not necessarilly solve the issue of the moment from which it can be considered that there is a contract in the case of contracts concludes by electronic means
  • 13. Solutionsgiven by theDEC  The exact time of birth of the electronic contract still needs to be determined under the rules of each legal system
  • 14. Lack of regulation  Directive doesn’t vary the criteria used in their respective legal systems  Directive doesn’t determine the moment a contract is formulated when made by electronic means
  • 15. Why??  Difficulties that this ascertainement implies, given the diversity of solutions present in the Member States
  • 16. Art. 11 of DEC  Does not specify the time and and place of completion of an electronic contract  But, it obliges the service provider to acknowledge the Receipt of the recipient’s order without undue delay
  • 17. Consequently  A contract is not valid if the final confirmation called for art. 11, 1, a) of ECD does not exist
  • 18. Receipt  The mere fact of the document being deposited in the recipient’s email in-box signifies Receipt
  • 19. E-Commerce Directive: Model of electronic contract in three phases  First: is that of an entrepreneur offering through electronic means (e.g., Virtual Store) the sale of goods or offer of services (contractual offer)
  • 20. Second Phase  The second is that of a consumer (or other entrepreneur) who places an order throught electronic means (acceptance of offer)
  • 21. Third Phase  Third Phase is that where the first entrepreneur must send Acknowledgement of receipt of the acceptance sent by tge consumer (or second entrepreneur)
  • 22. But  There is no obligation to include these three phases in electronic contracts between Member States  In fact, when dealing with contracts that are not celebrated between consumers, and if all parties are in express agreement, the ACK of Receipt can be omitted
  • 23.
  • 24. General Terms and Conditions On line Contracts  Express a rationalisation phenomemon og the contract in economic terms: - Reduction of costs in the negotiation - Speed in the provision of services  Online International Contracts are carried out under the General Terms and Conditions
  • 25. Virtual Store  By clicking on the corresponding website icon, clients expresses, in principle, acceptance
  • 26. Problemsof irreflexivecontracting  Specific horizontal projection regulations, for warning consumers and clients of the existence of unfair terms of the on line contract sep-up for Virtual Store  This regulation act againts abusive conditions
  • 27. Directive93/13/CEE  On unfair terms in consumer contracts
  • 28. Directive93/13/CEE  UnfairTerm. A contractual term which has not been individually negotiated shall be regarded as unfair if, contrary to the requirement of good faith, it causes a significant imbalance in the parties' rights and obligations arising under the contract, to the detriment of the consumer
  • 29. 2 Different Questions  Control of the contract’s content (Abusive Terms)  Incorporation (of General Terms and Conditions) to the contract
  • 30. Good faith  General Principle in Contract Law  Control of the contract content according to the existence of a significant imbalance in relation with the bargaining power of parties
  • 31. Control of AbusiveTerms and Conditions  According to Spanish Law: Law 7/1998 is applicable to contracts: - That are subject to Spanish Law, or - When the adherent has issued its business declaration in the Spanish territory  Choice of Law Clause
  • 32. Incorporation of General Termsand Conditions  When does it take place?? According to the legal system applicable to the General Terms and Conditions  Which one? Choice of Law Clause
  • 33. I.E.  Under the spanish regulation “in case of telephone or electronic contracting, it is necessary to state (…) acceptance of each and every provision of the contract, wihout the need for the conventional signature. In this case, the consumer will be sent written justification of the recently made contract immediately, where the terms and conditions will be stated therein” (art. 5, 4º)
  • 34. To sum up:  First step: once the Client’s acceptance to the general terms and conditions of the contract formalised through an Online Store has taken place, one must verify if they have all been incorporated, pursuant to the legal system governing the said terms and conditions
  • 35. Subsequently:  It must be determined if the international online contract has born according to the applicable regulations thereto, and specifically, the criteria set by said legal system with respect to distance contracts, in addition to the requirements for its formalization
  • 36. Do you remember?  Present Parties?  Absent Parties?  Usual rules  Special rules for Distance Contracts
  • 37. Choice of Law Clause  The interpretation and performance of this contract are governed by Spanish law (i.e.)
  • 38.
  • 39. Documents forpreparing the Activity  G. Esteban & E. Gómez, Offer and Acceptance in active and passive Websites (Draft)  E. Gómez, International Electronic contracting: Offer and Acceptance, European Scientific Journal, vol. 8, nº 28  E. Gómez, Regulation of Electronic Contracts in the European Community, European International Journal of Science and Technology, 2013, vol. 2, nº 8  E. Gómez, The formation of Electronic Contract: EU Regulation, ICT Law, 2013  G. Esteban, Internationalization of Spanish Olive Oil Sector through the use of a Virtual Store, International Journal of Business Management, 2014
  • 40. Look for answers to theseQuestions:  What says the E-Commerce Directive about the moment of birth of the electronic contract?  Which is the legal system that decide if the content of the web-site is an offer?  When could we consider the acceptance in cases of international electronic contracts in according to the European Law?  What is the meaing of General Terms and Conditions of Contracts?  How it is decided its incorporation to the international contract?