Book 4: Obligations & Contracts

Title VI. – SALES

CHAPTER 4 > OBLIGATIONS OF THE VENDOR

SECTION 1. – General Provisions

Art. 1495. The vendor is bound to transfer the ownership of and deliver, as well as warrant the thing which is the object of the sale. (1461a)

Art. 1496. The ownership of the thing sold is acquired by the vendee from the moment it is delivered to him in any of the ways specified in Articles 1497 to 1501, or in any other manner signifying an agreement that the possession is transferred from the vendor to the vendee. (n)

SECTION 2. – Delivery of the Thing Sold

Art. 1497. The thing sold shall be understood as delivered, when it is placed in the control and possession of the vendee. (1462a)

Art. 1498. When the sale is made through a public instrument, the execution thereof shall be equivalent to the delivery of the thing which is the object of the contract, if from the deed the contrary does not appear or cannot clearly be inferred.

With regard to movable property, its delivery may also be made by the delivery of the keys of the place or depository where it is stored or kept. (1463a)

Art. 1499. The delivery of movable property may likewise be made by the mere consent or agreement of the contracting parties, if the thing sold cannot be transferred to the possession of the vendee at the time of the sale, or if the latter already had it in his possession for any other reason. (1463a)

Art. 1500. There may also be tradition constitutum possessorium. (n)

Art. 1501. With respect to incorporeal property, the provisions of the first paragraph of article 1498 shall govern. In any other case wherein said provisions are not applicable, the placing of the titles of ownership in the possession of the vendee or the use by the vendee of his rights, with the vendor’s consent, shall be understood as a delivery. (1464)

Art. 1502. When goods are delivered to the buyer “on sale or return” to give the buyer an option to return the goods instead of paying the price, the ownership passes to the buyer of delivery, but he may revest the ownership in the seller by returning or tendering the goods within the time fixed in the contract, or, if no time has been fixed, within a reasonable time. (n)

When goods are delivered to the buyer on approval or on trial or on satisfaction, or other similar terms, the ownership therein passes to the buyer:

(1) When he signifies his approval or acceptance to the seller or does any other act adopting the transaction;

(2) If he does not signify his approval or acceptance to the seller, but retains the goods without giving notice of rejection, then if a time has been fixed for the return of the goods, on the expiration of such time, and, if no time has been fixed, on the expiration of a reasonable time. What is a reasonable time is a question of fact. (n)

Art. 1503. When there is a contract of sale of specific goods, the seller may, by the terms of the contract, reserve the right of possession or ownership in the goods until certain conditions have been fulfilled. The right of possession or ownership may be thus reserved notwithstanding the delivery of the goods to the buyer or to a carrier or other bailee for the purpose of transmission to the buyer.

Where goods are shipped, and by the bill of lading the goods are deliverable to the seller or his agent, or to the order of the seller or of his agent, the seller thereby reserves the ownership in the goods. But, if except for the form of the bill of lading, the ownership would have passed to the buyer on shipment of the goods, the seller’s property in the goods shall be deemed to be only for the purpose of securing performance by the buyer of his obligations under the contract.

Where goods are shipped, and by the bill of lading the goods are deliverable to order of the buyer or of his agent, but possession of the bill of lading is retained by the seller or his agent, the seller thereby reserves a right to the possession of the goods as against the buyer.

Where the seller of goods draws on the buyer for the price and transmits the bill of exchange and bill of lading together to the buyer to secure acceptance or payment of the bill of exchange, the buyer is bound to return the bill of lading if he does not honor the bill of exchange, and if he wrongfully retains the bill of lading he acquires no added right thereby. If, however, the bill of lading provides that the goods are deliverable to the buyer or to the order of the buyer, or is indorsed in blank, or to the buyer by the consignee named therein, one who purchases in good faith, for value, the bill of lading, or goods from the buyer will obtain the ownership in the goods, although the bill of exchange has not been honored, provided that such purchaser has received delivery of the bill of lading indorsed by the consignee named therein, or of the goods, without notice of the facts making the transfer wrongful. (n)

Art. 1504. Unless otherwise agreed, the goods remain at the seller’s risk until the ownership therein is transferred to the buyer, but when the ownership therein is transferred to the buyer the goods are at the buyer’s risk whether actual delivery has been made or not, except that:

(1) Where delivery of the goods has been made to the buyer or to a bailee for the buyer, in pursuance of the contract and the ownership in the goods has been retained by the seller merely to secure performance by the buyer of his obligations under the contract, the goods are at the buyer’s risk from the time of such delivery;

(2) Where actual delivery has been delayed through the fault of either the buyer or seller the goods are at the risk of the party in fault. (n)

Art. 1505. Subject to the provisions of this Title, where goods are sold by a person who is not the owner thereof, and who does not sell them under authority or with the consent of the owner, the buyer acquires no better title to the goods than the seller had, unless the owner of the goods is by his conduct precluded from denying the seller’s authority to sell.

Nothing in this Title, however, shall affect:

(1) The provisions of any factors’ act, recording laws, or any other provision of law enabling the apparent owner of goods to dispose of them as if he were the true owner thereof;

(2) The validity of any contract of sale under statutory power of sale or under the order of a court of competent jurisdiction;

(3) Purchases made in a merchant’s store, or in fairs, or markets, in accordance with the Code of Commerce and special laws. (n)

Art. 1506. Where the seller of goods has a voidable title thereto, but his title has not been avoided at the time of the sale, the buyer acquires a good title to the goods, provided he buys them in good faith, for value, and without notice of the seller’s defect of title. (n)

Art. 1507. A document of title in which it is stated that the goods referred to therein will be delivered to the bearer, or to the order of any person named in such document is a negotiable document of title. (n)

Art. 1508. A negotiable document of title may be negotiated by delivery:

(1) Where by the terms of the document the carrier, warehouseman or other bailee issuing the same undertakes to deliver the goods to the bearer; or

(2) Where by the terms of the document the carrier, warehouseman or other bailee issuing the same undertakes to deliver the goods to the order of a specified person, and such person or a subsequent endorsee of the document has indorsed it in blank or to the bearer.

Where by the terms of a negotiable document of title the goods are deliverable to bearer or where a negotiable document of title has been indorsed in blank or to bearer, any holder may indorse the same to himself or to any specified person, and in such case the document shall thereafter be negotiated only by the endorsement of such endorsee. (n)

Art. 1509. A negotiable document of title may be negotiated by the endorsement of the person to whose order the goods are by the terms of the document deliverable. Such endorsement may be in blank, to bearer or to a specified person. If indorsed to a specified person, it may be again negotiated by the endorsement of such person in blank, to bearer or to another specified person. Subsequent negotiations may be made in like manner. (n)

Art. 1510. If a document of title which contains an undertaking by a carrier, warehouseman or other bailee to deliver the goods to bearer, to a specified person or order of a specified person or which contains words of like import, has placed upon it the words “not negotiable,” “non-negotiable” or the like, such document may nevertheless be negotiated by the holder and is a negotiable document of title within the meaning of this Title. But nothing in this Title contained shall be construed as limiting or defining the effect upon the obligations of the carrier, warehouseman, or other bailee issuing a document of title or placing thereon the words “not negotiable,” “non-negotiable,” or the like. (n)

Art. 1511. A document of title which is not in such form that it can be negotiated by delivery may be transferred by the holder by delivery to a purchaser or donee. A non-negotiable document cannot be negotiated and the endorsement of such a document gives the transferee no additional right. (n)

Art. 1512. A negotiable document of title may be negotiated:

(1) By the owner therefor; or

(2) By any person to whom the possession or custody of the document has been entrusted by the owner, if, by the terms of the document the bailee issuing the document undertakes to deliver the goods to the order of the person to whom the possession or custody of the document has been entrusted, or if at the time of such entrusting the document is in such form that it may be negotiated by delivery. (n)

Art. 1513. A person to whom a negotiable document of title has been duly negotiated acquires thereby:

(1) Such title to the goods as the person negotiating the document to him had or had ability to convey to a purchaser in good faith for value and also such title to the goods as the person to whose order the goods were to be delivered by the terms of the document had or had ability to convey to a purchaser in good faith for value; and

(2) The direct obligation of the bailee issuing the document to hold possession of the goods for him according to the terms of the document as fully as if such bailee had contracted directly with him. (n)

Art. 1514. A person to whom a document of title has been transferred, but not negotiated, acquires thereby, as against the transferor, the title to the goods, subject to the terms of any agreement with the transferor.

If the document is non-negotiable, such person also acquires the right to notify the bailee who issued the document of the transfer thereof, and thereby to acquire the direct obligation of such bailee to hold possession of the goods for him according to the terms of the document.

Prior to the notification to such bailee by the transferor or transferee of a non-negotiable document of title, the title of the transferee to the goods and the right to acquire the obligation of such bailee may be defeated by the levy of an attachment of execution upon the goods by a creditor of the transferor, or by a notification to such bailee by the transferor or a subsequent purchaser from the transfer of a subsequent sale of the goods by the transferor. (n)

Art. 1515. Where a negotiable document of title is transferred for value by delivery, and the endorsement of the transferor is essential for negotiation, the transferee acquires a right against the transferor to compel him to endorse the document unless a contrary intention appears. The negotiation shall take effect as of the time when the endorsement is actually made. (n)

Art. 1516. A person who for value negotiates or transfers a document of title by endorsement or delivery, including one who assigns for value a claim secured by a document of title unless a contrary intention appears, warrants:

(1) That the document is genuine;

(2) That he has a legal right to negotiate or transfer it;

(3) That he has knowledge of no fact which would impair the validity or worth of the document; and

(4) That he has a right to transfer the title to the goods and that the goods are merchantable or fit for a particular purpose, whenever such warranties would have been implied if the contract of the parties had been to transfer without a document of title the goods represented thereby. (n)

Art. 1517. The endorsement of a document of title shall not make the endorser liable for any failure on the part of the bailee who issued the document or previous endorsers thereof to fulfill their respective obligations. (n)

Art. 1518. The validity of the negotiation of a negotiable document of title is not impaired by the fact that the negotiation was a breach of duty on the part of the person making the negotiation, or by the fact that the owner of the document was deprived of the possession of the same by loss, theft, fraud, accident, mistake, duress, or conversion, if the person to whom the document was negotiated or a person to whom the document was subsequently negotiated paid value therefor in good faith without notice of the breach of duty, or loss, theft, fraud, accident, mistake, duress or conversion. (n)

Art. 1519. If goods are delivered to a bailee by the owner or by a person whose act in conveying the title to them to a purchaser in good faith for value would bind the owner and a negotiable document of title is issued for them they cannot thereafter, while in possession of such bailee, be attached by garnishment or otherwise or be levied under an execution unless the document be first surrendered to the bailee or its negotiation enjoined. The bailee shall in no case be compelled to deliver up the actual possession of the goods until the document is surrendered to him or impounded by the court. (n)

Art. 1520. A creditor whose debtor is the owner of a negotiable document of title shall be entitled to such aid from courts of appropriate jurisdiction by injunction and otherwise in attaching such document or in satisfying the claim by means thereof as is allowed at law or in equity in regard to property which cannot readily be attached or levied upon by ordinary legal process. (n)

Art. 1521. Whether it is for the buyer to take possession of the goods or of the seller to send them to the buyer is a question depending in each case on the contract, express or implied, between the parties. Apart from any such contract, express or implied, or usage of trade to the contrary, the place of delivery is the seller’s place of business if he has one, and if not his residence; but in case of a contract of sale of specific goods, which to the knowledge of the parties when the contract or the sale was made were in some other place, then that place is the place of delivery.

Where by a contract of sale the seller is bound to send the goods to the buyer, but no time for sending them is fixed, the seller is bound to send them within a reasonable time.

Where the goods at the time of sale are in the possession of a third person, the seller has not fulfilled his obligation to deliver to the buyer unless and until such third person acknowledges to the buyer that he holds the goods on the buyer’s behalf.

Demand or tender of delivery may be treated as ineffectual unless made at a reasonable hour. What is a reasonable hour is a question of fact.

Unless otherwise agreed, the expenses of and incidental to putting the goods into a deliverable state must be borne by the seller. (n)

Art. 1522. Where the seller delivers to the buyer a quantity of goods less than he contracted to sell, the buyer may reject them, but if the buyer accepts or retains the goods so delivered, knowing that the seller is not going to perform the contract in full, he must pay for them at the contract rate. If, however, the buyer has used or disposed of the goods delivered before he knows that the seller is not going to perform his contract in full, the buyer shall not be liable for more than the fair value to him of the goods so received.

Where the seller delivers to the buyer a quantity of goods larger than he contracted to sell, the buyer may accept the goods included in the contract and reject the rest. If the buyer accepts the whole of the goods so delivered he must pay for them at the contract rate.

Where the seller delivers to the buyer the goods he contracted to sell mixed with goods of a different description not included in the contract, the buyer may accept the goods which are in accordance with the contract and reject the rest.

In the preceding two paragraphs, if the subject matter is indivisible, the buyer may reject the whole of the goods.

The provisions of this article are subject to any usage of trade, special agreement, or course of dealing between the parties. (n)

Art. 1523. Where, in pursuance of a contract of sale, the seller is authorized or required to send the goods to the buyer, delivery of the goods to a carrier, whether named by the buyer or not, for the purpose of transmission to the buyer is deemed to be a delivery of the goods to the buyer, except in the case provided for in Article 1503, first, second and third paragraphs, or unless a contrary intent appears.

Unless otherwise authorized by the buyer, the seller must make such contract with the carrier on behalf of the buyer as may be reasonable, having regard to the nature of the goods and the other circumstances of the case. If the seller omit so to do, and the goods are lost or damaged in course of transit, the buyer may decline to treat the delivery to the carrier as a delivery to himself, or may hold the seller responsible in damages.

Unless otherwise agreed, where goods are sent by the seller to the buyer under circumstances in which the seller knows or ought to know that it is usual to insure, the seller must give such notice to the buyer as may enable him to insure them during their transit, and, if the seller fails to do so, the goods shall be deemed to be at his risk during such transit. (n)

Art. 1524. The vendor shall not be bound to deliver the thing sold, if the vendee has not paid him the price, or if no period for the payment has been fixed in the contract. (1466)

Art. 1525. The seller of goods is deemed to be an unpaid seller within the meaning of this Title:

(1) When the whole of the price has not been paid or tendered;

(2) When a bill of exchange or other negotiable instrument has been received as conditional payment, and the condition on which it was received has been broken by reason of the dishonor of the instrument, the insolvency of the buyer, or otherwise.

In Articles 1525 to 1535 the term “seller” includes an agent of the seller to whom the bill of lading has been indorsed, or a consignor or agent who has himself paid, or is directly responsible for the price, or any other person who is in the position of a seller. (n)

Art. 1526. Subject to the provisions of this Title, notwithstanding that the ownership in the goods may have passed to the buyer, the unpaid seller of goods, as such, has:

(1) A lien on the goods or right to retain them for the price while he is in possession of them;

(2) In case of the insolvency of the buyer, a right of stopping the goods in transitu after he has parted with the possession of them;

(3) A right of resale as limited by this Title;

(4) A right to rescind the sale as likewise limited by this Title.

Where the ownership in the goods has not passed to the buyer, the unpaid seller has, in addition to his other remedies a right of withholding delivery similar to and coextensive with his rights of lien and stoppage in transitu where the ownership has passed to the buyer. (n)

Art. 1527. Subject to the provisions of this Title, the unpaid seller of goods who is in possession of them is entitled to retain possession of them until payment or tender of the price in the following cases, namely:

(1) Where the goods have been sold without any stipulation as to credit;

(2) Where the goods have been sold on credit, but the term of credit has expired;

(3) Where the buyer becomes insolvent.

The seller may exercise his right of lien notwithstanding that he is in possession of the goods as agent or bailee for the buyer. (n)

Art. 1528. Where an unpaid seller has made part delivery of the goods, he may exercise his right of lien on the remainder, unless such part delivery has been made under such circumstances as to show an intent to waive the lien or right of retention. (n)

Art. 1529. The unpaid seller of goods loses his lien thereon:

(1) When he delivers the goods to a carrier or other bailee for the purpose of transmission to the buyer without reserving the ownership in the goods or the right to the possession thereof;

(2) When the buyer or his agent lawfully obtains possession of the goods;

(3) By waiver thereof.

The unpaid seller of goods, having a lien thereon, does not lose his lien by reason only that he has obtained judgment or decree for the price of the goods. (n)

Art. 1530. Subject to the provisions of this Title, when the buyer of goods is or becomes insolvent, the unpaid seller who has parted with the possession of the goods has the right of stopping them in transitu, that is to say, he may resume possession of the goods at any time while they are in transit, and he will then become entitled to the same rights in regard to the goods as he would have had if he had never parted with the possession. (n)

Art. 1531. Goods are in transit within the meaning of the preceding article:

(1) From the time when they are delivered to a carrier by land, water, or air, or other bailee for the purpose of transmission to the buyer, until the buyer, or his agent in that behalf, takes delivery of them from such carrier or other bailee;

(2) If the goods are rejected by the buyer, and the carrier or other bailee continues in possession of them, even if the seller has refused to receive them back.

Goods are no longer in transit within the meaning of the preceding article:

(1) If the buyer, or his agent in that behalf, obtains delivery of the goods before their arrival at the appointed destination;

(2) If, after the arrival of the goods at the appointed destination, the carrier or other bailee acknowledges to the buyer or his agent that he holds the goods on his behalf and continues in possession of them as bailee for the buyer or his agent; and it is immaterial that further destination for the goods may have been indicated by the buyer;

(3) If the carrier or other bailee wrongfully refuses to deliver the goods to the buyer or his agent in that behalf.

If the goods are delivered to a ship, freight train, truck, or airplane chartered by the buyer, it is a question depending on the circumstances of the particular case, whether they are in the possession of the carrier as such or as agent of the buyer.

If part delivery of the goods has been made to the buyer, or his agent in that behalf, the remainder of the goods may be stopped in transitu, unless such part delivery has been under such circumstances as to show an agreement with the buyer to give up possession of the whole of the goods. (n)

Art. 1532. The unpaid seller may exercise his right of stoppage in transitu either by obtaining actual possession of the goods or by giving notice of his claim to the carrier or other bailee in whose possession the goods are. Such notice may be given either to the person in actual possession of the goods or to his principal. In the latter case the notice, to be effectual, must be given at such time and under such circumstances that the principal, by the exercise of reasonable diligence, may prevent a delivery to the buyer.

When notice of stoppage in transitu is given by the seller to the carrier, or other bailee in possession of the goods, he must redeliver the goods to, or according to the directions of, the seller. The expenses of such delivery must be borne by the seller. If, however, a negotiable document of title representing the goods has been issued by the carrier or other bailee, he shall not obliged to deliver or justified in delivering the goods to the seller unless such document is first surrendered for cancellation. (n)

Art. 1533. Where the goods are of perishable nature, or where the seller expressly reserves the right of resale in case the buyer should make default, or where the buyer has been in default in the payment of the price for an unreasonable time, an unpaid seller having a right of lien or having stopped the goods in transitu may resell the goods. He shall not thereafter be liable to the original buyer upon the contract of sale or for any profit made by such resale, but may recover from the buyer damages for any loss occasioned by the breach of the contract of sale.

Where a resale is made, as authorized in this article, the buyer acquires a good title as against the original buyer.

It is not essential to the validity of resale that notice of an intention to resell the goods be given by the seller to the original buyer. But where the right to resell is not based on the perishable nature of the goods or upon an express provision of the contract of sale, the giving or failure to give such notice shall be relevant in any issue involving the question whether the buyer had been in default for an unreasonable time before the resale was made.

It is not essential to the validity of a resale that notice of the time and place of such resale should be given by the seller to the original buyer.

The seller is bound to exercise reasonable care and judgment in making a resale, and subject to this requirement may make a resale either by public or private sale. He cannot, however, directly or indirectly buy the goods. (n)

Art. 1534. An unpaid seller having the right of lien or having stopped the goods in transitu, may rescind the transfer of title and resume the ownership in the goods, where he expressly reserved the right to do so in case the buyer should make default, or where the buyer has been in default in the payment of the price for an unreasonable time. The seller shall not thereafter be liable to the buyer upon the contract of sale, but may recover from the buyer damages for any loss occasioned by the breach of the contract.

The transfer of title shall not be held to have been rescinded by an unpaid seller until he has manifested by notice to the buyer or by some other overt act an intention to rescind. It is not necessary that such overt act should be communicated to the buyer, but the giving or failure to give notice to the buyer of the intention to rescind shall be relevant in any issue involving the question whether the buyer had been in default for an unreasonable time before the right of rescission was asserted. (n)

Art. 1535. Subject to the provisions of this Title, the unpaid seller’s right of lien or stoppage in transitu is not affected by any sale, or other disposition of the goods which the buyer may have made, unless the seller has assented thereto.

If, however, a negotiable document of title has been issued for goods, no seller’s lien or right of stoppage in transitu shall defeat the right of any purchaser for value in good faith to whom such document has been negotiated, whether such negotiation be prior or subsequent to the notification to the carrier, or other bailee who issued such document, of the seller’s claim to a lien or right of stoppage in transitu. (n)

Art. 1536. The vendor is not bound to deliver the thing sold in case the vendee should lose the right to make use of the terms as provided in Article 1198. (1467a)

Art. 1537. The vendor is bound to deliver the thing sold and its accessions and accessories in the condition in which they were upon the perfection of the contract.

All the fruits shall pertain to the vendee from the day on which the contract was perfected. (1468a)

Art. 1538. In case of loss, deterioration or improvement of the thing before its delivery, the rules in Article 1189 shall be observed, the vendor being considered the debtor. (n)

Art. 1539. The obligation to deliver the thing sold includes that of placing in the control of the vendee all that is mentioned in the contract, in conformity with the following rules:

If the sale of real estate should be made with a statement of its area, at the rate of a certain price for a unit of measure or number, the vendor shall be obliged to deliver to the vendee, if the latter should demand it, all that may have been stated in the contract; but, should this be not possible, the vendee may choose between a proportional reduction of the price and the rescission of the contract, provided that, in the latter case, the lack in the area be not less than one-tenth of that stated.

The same shall be done, even when the area is the same, if any part of the immovable is not of the quality specified in the contract.

The rescission, in this case, shall only take place at the will of the vendee, when the inferior value of the thing sold exceeds one-tenth of the price agreed upon.

Nevertheless, if the vendee would not have bought the immovable had he known of its smaller area of inferior quality, he may rescind the sale. (1469a)

Art. 1540. If, in the case of the preceding article, there is a greater area or number in the immovable than that stated in the contract, the vendee may accept the area included in the contract and reject the rest. If he accepts the whole area, he must pay for the same at the contract rate. (1470a)

Art. 1541. The provisions of the two preceding articles shall apply to judicial sales. (n)

Art. 1542. In the sale of real estate, made for a lump sum and not at the rate of a certain sum for a unit of measure or number, there shall be no increase or decrease of the price, although there be a greater or less area or number than that stated in the contract.

The same rule shall be applied when two or more immovables as sold for a single price; but if, besides mentioning the boundaries, which is indispensable in every conveyance of real estate, its area or number should be designated in the contract, the vendor shall be bound to deliver all that is included within said boundaries, even when it exceeds the area or number specified in the contract; and, should he not be able to do so, he shall suffer a reduction in the price, in proportion to what is lacking in the area or number, unless the contract is rescinded because the vendee does not accede to the failure to deliver what has been stipulated. (1471)

Art. 1543. The actions arising from Articles 1539 and 1542 shall prescribe in six months, counted from the day of delivery. (1472a)

Art. 1544. If the same thing should have been sold to different vendees, the ownership shall be transferred to the person who may have first taken possession thereof in good faith, if it should be movable property.

Should it be immovable property, the ownership shall belong to the person acquiring it who in good faith first recorded it in the Registry of Property.

Should there be no inscription, the ownership shall pertain to the person who in good faith was first in the possession; and, in the absence thereof, to the person who presents the oldest title, provided there is good faith. (1473)

SECTION 3. – Conditions and Warranties

Art. 1545. Where the obligation of either party to a contract of sale is subject to any condition which is not performed, such party may refuse to proceed with the contract or he may waive performance of the condition. If the other party has promised that the condition should happen or be performed, such first mentioned party may also treat the nonperformance of the condition as a breach of warranty.

Where the ownership in the thing has not passed, the buyer may treat the fulfillment by the seller of his obligation to deliver the same as described and as warranted expressly or by implication in the contract of sale as a condition of the obligation of the buyer to perform his promise to accept and pay for the thing. (n)

Art. 1546. Any affirmation of fact or any promise by the seller relating to the thing is an express warranty if the natural tendency of such affirmation or promise is to induce the buyer to purchase the same, and if the buyer purchase the thing relying thereon. No affirmation of the value of the thing, nor any statement purporting to be a statement of the seller’s opinion only, shall be construed as a warranty, unless the seller made such affirmation or statement as an expert and it was relied upon by the buyer. (n)

Art. 1547. In a contract of sale, unless a contrary intention appears, there is:

(1) An implied warranty on the part of the seller that he has a right to sell the thing at the time when the ownership is to pass, and that the buyer shall from that time have and enjoy the legal and peaceful possession of the thing;

(2) An implied warranty that the thing shall be free from any hidden faults or defects, or any charge or encumbrance not declared or known to the buyer.

This Article shall not, however, be held to render liable a sheriff, auctioneer, mortgagee, pledgee, or other person professing to sell by virtue of authority in fact or law, for the sale of a thing in which a third person has a legal or equitable interest. (n)

SUBSECTION 1. – Warranty in Case of Eviction

Art. 1548. Eviction shall take place whenever by a final judgment based on a right prior to the sale or an act imputable to the vendor, the vendee is deprived of the whole or of a part of the thing purchased.

The vendor shall answer for the eviction even though nothing has been said in the contract on the subject.

The contracting parties, however, may increase, diminish, or suppress this legal obligation of the vendor. (1475a)

Art. 1549. The vendee need not appeal from the decision in order that the vendor may become liable for eviction. (n)

Art. 1550. When adverse possession had been commenced before the sale but the prescriptive period is completed after the transfer, the vendor shall not be liable for eviction. (n)

Art. 1551. If the property is sold for nonpayment of taxes due and not made known to the vendee before the sale, the vendor is liable for eviction. (n)

Art. 1552. The judgment debtor is also responsible for eviction in judicial sales, unless it is otherwise decreed in the judgment. (n)

Art. 1553. Any stipulation exempting the vendor from the obligation to answer for eviction shall be void, if he acted in bad faith. (1476)

Art. 1554. If the vendee has renounced the right to warranty in case of eviction, and eviction should take place, the vendor shall only pay the value which the thing sold had at the time of the eviction. Should the vendee have made the waiver with knowledge of the risks of eviction and assumed its consequences, the vendor shall not be liable. (1477)

Art. 1555. When the warranty has been agreed upon or nothing has been stipulated on this point, in case eviction occurs, the vendee shall have the right to demand of the vendor:

(1) The return of the value which the thing sold had at the time of the eviction, be it greater or less than the price of the sale;

(2) The income or fruits, if he has been ordered to deliver them to the party who won the suit against him;

(3) The costs of the suit which caused the eviction, and, in a proper case, those of the suit brought against the vendor for the warranty;

(4) The expenses of the contract, if the vendee has paid them;

(5) The damages and interests, and ornamental expenses, if the sale was made in bad faith. (1478)

Art. 1556. Should the vendee lose, by reason of the eviction, a part of the thing sold of such importance, in relation to the whole, that he would not have bought it without said part, he may demand the rescission of the contract; but with the obligation to return the thing without other encumbrances that those which it had when he acquired it.

He may exercise this right of action, instead of enforcing the vendor’s liability for eviction.

The same rule shall be observed when two or more things have been jointly sold for a lump sum, or for a separate price for each of them, if it should clearly appear that the vendee would not have purchased one without the other. (1479a)

Art. 1557. The warranty cannot be enforced until a final judgment has been rendered, whereby the vendee loses the thing acquired or a part thereof. (1480)

Art. 1558. The vendor shall not be obliged to make good the proper warranty, unless he is summoned in the suit for eviction at the instance of the vendee. (1481a)

Art. 1559. The defendant vendee shall ask, within the time fixed in the Rules of Court for answering the complaint, that the vendor be made a co-defendant. (1482a)

Art. 1560. If the immovable sold should be encumbered with any non-apparent burden or servitude, not mentioned in the agreement, of such a nature that it must be presumed that the vendee would not have acquired it had he been aware thereof, he may ask for the rescission of the contract, unless he should prefer the appropriate indemnity. Neither right can be exercised if the non-apparent burden or servitude is recorded in the Registry of Property, unless there is an express warranty that the thing is free from all burdens and encumbrances.

Within one year, to be computed from the execution of the deed, the vendee may bring the action for rescission, or sue for damages.

One year having elapsed, he may only bring an action for damages within an equal period, to be counted from the date on which he discovered the burden or servitude. (1483a)

SUBSECTION 2. – Warranty Against Hidden Defects
of or Encumbrances Upon the Thing Sold

Art. 1561. The vendor shall be responsible for warranty against the hidden defects which the thing sold may have, should they render it unfit for the use for which it is intended, or should they diminish its fitness for such use to such an extent that, had the vendee been aware thereof, he would not have acquired it or would have given a lower price for it; but said vendor shall not be answerable for patent defects or those which may be visible, or for those which are not visible if the vendee is an expert who, by reason of his trade or profession, should have known them. (1484a)

Art. 1562. In a sale of goods, there is an implied warranty or condition as to the quality or fitness of the goods, as follows:

(1) Where the buyer, expressly or by implication, makes known to the seller the particular purpose for which the goods are acquired, and it appears that the buyer relies on the seller’s skill or judgment (whether he be the grower or manufacturer or not), there is an implied warranty that the goods shall be reasonably fit for such purpose;

(2) Where the goods are brought by description from a seller who deals in goods of that description (whether he be the grower or manufacturer or not), there is an implied warranty that the goods shall be of merchantable quality. (n)

Art. 1563. In the case of contract of sale of a specified article under its patent or other trade name, there is no warranty as to its fitness for any particular purpose, unless there is a stipulation to the contrary. (n)

Art. 1564. An implied warranty or condition as to the quality or fitness for a particular purpose may be annexed by the usage of trade. (n)

Art. 1565. In the case of a contract of sale by sample, if the seller is a dealer in goods of that kind, there is an implied warranty that the goods shall be free from any defect rendering them unmerchantable which would not be apparent on reasonable examination of the sample. (n)

Art. 1566. The vendor is responsible to the vendee for any hidden faults or defects in the thing sold, even though he was not aware thereof.

This provision shall not apply if the contrary has been stipulated, and the vendor was not aware of the hidden faults or defects in the thing sold. (1485)

Art. 1567. In the cases of Articles 1561, 1562, 1564, 1565 and 1566, the vendee may elect between withdrawing from the contract and demanding a proportionate reduction of the price, with damages in either case. (1486a)

Art. 1568. If the thing sold should be lost in consequence of the hidden faults, and the vendor was aware of them, he shall bear the loss, and shall be obliged to return the price and refund the expenses of the contract, with damages. If he was not aware of them, he shall only return the price and interest thereon, and reimburse the expenses of the contract which the vendee might have paid. (1487a)

Art. 1569. If the thing sold had any hidden fault at the time of the sale, and should thereafter be lost by a fortuitous event or through the fault of the vendee, the latter may demand of the vendor the price which he paid, less the value which the thing had when it was lost.

If the vendor acted in bad faith, he shall pay damages to the vendee. (1488a)

Art. 1570. The preceding articles of this Subsection shall be applicable to judicial sales, except that the judgment debtor shall not be liable for damages. (1489a)

Art. 1571. Actions arising from the provisions of the preceding ten articles shall be barred after six months, from the delivery of the thing sold. (1490)

Art. 1572. If two or more animals are sold together, whether for a lump sum or for a separate price for each of them, the redhibitory defect of one shall only give rise to its redhibition, and not that of the others; unless it should appear that the vendee would not have purchased the sound animal or animals without the defective one.

The latter case shall be presumed when a team, yoke pair, or set is bought, even if a separate price has been fixed for each one of the animals composing the same. (1491)

Art. 1573. The provisions of the preceding article with respect to the sale of animals shall in like manner be applicable to the sale of other things. (1492)

Art. 1574. There is no warranty against hidden defects of animals sold at fairs or at public auctions, or of live stock sold as condemned. (1493a)

Art. 1575. The sale of animals suffering from contagious diseases shall be void.

A contract of sale of animals shall also be void if the use or service for which they are acquired has been stated in the contract, and they are found to be unfit therefor. (1494a)

Art. 1576. If the hidden defect of animals, even in case a professional inspection has been made, should be of such a nature that expert knowledge is not sufficient to discover it, the defect shall be considered as redhibitory.

But if the veterinarian, through ignorance or bad faith should fail to discover or disclose it, he shall be liable for damages. (1495)

Art. 1577. The redhibitory action, based on the faults or defects of animals, must be brought within forty days from the date of their delivery to the vendee.

This action can only be exercised with respect to faults and defects which are determined by law or by local customs. (1496a)

Art. 1578. If the animal should die within three days after its purchase, the vendor shall be liable if the disease which cause the death existed at the time of the contract. (1497a)

Art. 1579. If the sale be rescinded, the animal shall be returned in the condition in which it was sold and delivered, the vendee being answerable for any injury due to his negligence, and not arising from the redhibitory fault or defect. (1498)

Art. 1580. In the sale of animals with redhibitory defects, the vendee shall also enjoy the right mentioned in article 1567; but he must make use thereof within the same period which has been fixed for the exercise of the redhibitory action. (1499)

Art. 1581. The form of sale of large cattle shall be governed by special laws. (n)

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