Comparative Law of Sales

Course Description: 

The course will compare and contrast the United Nations Convention on the International Sale of Goods (“CISG”), the Uniform Commercial Code, especially Article 2, (“UCC”) from the United States, the common law, and various aspects of the civil law in the treatment of transactions for the sale of goods. There will be occasional references to the UNIDROIT Principles of International Commercial Transactions. The course is oriented around sets of problems, and each problem has been derived from a real case. Students are expected to participate in the discussion of problems during class sessions. In addition, there are several sections that highlight fundamental differences between the common law and the civil law and the ways in which those differences are handled in the context of the CISG.

Learning Outcomes: 

• Ability to understand differing legal regimes as they may be applied to common problems

• Ability to demonstrate analytical skills and comparative understanding

• Ability to identify relevant issues in complex fact settings

• Ability to engage in careful statutory analysis


Class attendance and participation – 10%.  Students are expected to attend all classes.  Each student will be allowed one unexcused absence; any further absences must be justified by a valid excuse, preferably in advance.  Valid excuses include, without limitation, illness, serious family emergency, and travel for participation in a CEU sponsored event such as a moots competition.  The quality of classroom interventions or responses is more important than the quantity.

Final Exam:  The final exam will include two parts. One is likely to be a hypothetical scenario similar to one or more of the problems discussed in class.  You might be asked to decide a case as if you were the judge, or you might be asked to develop the arguments in favor of one party or the other, or you might be asked to do a comprehensive analysis of the various issues as if you were doing a short academic paper.  The second part is likely to be a short essay on a topic of interest or conflict.  Please pay careful attention to the specific tasks assigned to you in the examination.  The examination will account for 90% of the final grade.