the general terms and conditions
Terms and Conditions of Auction
By taking part in an auction in person, over the telephone or in writing, you accept and agree to be bound to the following Terms and Conditions. This applies also to bids submitted by fax or e-mail and to live bidding on the internet.
1. Auctions are voluntary or prescribed by law (auction of pledged property). They are held by Auktionshaus Rütten GmbH (“Auction House”) on the seller’s name and for his account (agent). Every seller will be given a number. Thus, the consignment list shows what items have been submitted by the different sellers.
2. Descriptions are made to the best of our knowledge and belief and are largely based on information provided by the consignors. The objects to be auctioned are second-hand. The property for sale is offered “as is”, i. e. in its physical condition at the time of the knock-down. Catalogue descriptions are no guarantee of or agreement on the condition of the property. This applies also to additional information and descriptions of the condition of the objects put up for auction. The Auction House reserves the right to correct in the auction any information provided in the catalogue. All the property to be auctioned may be inspected and examined in the premises of the Auction House during pre-auction viewing.
The Auction House is not subject to any warranty obligation. Notices of defects filed in due course will be passed on to the consignor. Patent defects must be notified within four weeks, hidden defects within one year. In the event of a reversed transaction, the auctioneer’s claim for surcharge shall remain unchanged.
3. Damage to objects put up for auction will only be mentioned in the catalogue if such damage, at the discretion of the Auction House, clearly impairs their appearance. If no mention has been made in the catalogue of repair, replenishment or other measures relating to works of art, nor of restoration, damage, etc., this shall not mean that the work of art concerned is in perfect condition. Illustrations in the catalogue, inserts and pictures on the internet shall not be binding.
4. The catalogue number specified by the bidder rather than the description or illustration in the catalogue shall be decisive for any bid.
5. As a rule, lots are put up for sale at the price indicated in the catalogue. If no price is specified, the auctioneer will begin with an estimated standard price or a price based on submitted bids. The increments are chosen at the auctioneer’s discretion. Bids can be made in the auction room, in writing prior to the auction (order to bid) or over the telephone, but they cannot be revoked according to the statutory provisions on distance contracts. Lots will be knocked down after the highest bid has been repeated three times, when no higher bid is placed and when the reserve price set by the seller has been reached. The Auction House cannot guarantee the establishment and maintenance of telecommunication connections. The auctioneer reserves the right to combine, separate or withdraw catalogue numbers or to call them out of their numerical order.
6. The auctioneer is entitled to refuse any bid without giving reasons. In this case, the previous bid shall be binding. In the event of identical bids, the earliest received will take precedence. When there is disagreement, the auctioneer may at his sole discretion immediately repeat the knock-down of a bid or once again put the lot concerned up for sale. No bidder can make a claim for acceptance of his bid. After a lot has been knocked down, the bidder is responsible for collecting it and paying for it. The buyer assumes the risk of loss, damage, confusion, etc. Every bidder buys in his own name and for own account.
7. Knock-downs may be subject to reservation. In this case, the bid shall be binding on the bidder for four weeks. Any knock-down subject to reservation will immediately become ineffective, if a higher bid is received during or after the auction or a bid is made at the reserve price. The first bidder will not be consulted or informed.
8. Surcharge. Any lot is knocked down at its net price. A 20-percent surcharge is added to the hammer price together with VAT (currently at a rate of 19 percent) levied on the surcharge only (total surcharge : 23.8 percent). Since the VAT is levied only on the surcharge, which constitutes a domestic payment, there will be no refund if the buyer exports the object concerned. Buyers resident in an EU member state and having a VAT ID number are an exception to this rule.
9. The total amount (hammer price plus surcharge plus VAT) shall be due for payment in cash. Non-cash means of payment are only accepted as conditional payment. Payment with EC card will only be accepted with the PIN number. Cheques have to be vouched by a bank or must be Landeszentralbank cheques.
In case of written, telephone or internet bids, payment shall be due within three days from the date of the auction. Buyers are in default from ten days after date of invoice. Payment of € 15 will be due for each monitory letter. Interest payable on arrears will be 10 percent p. a. from due date. The buyer will only be entitled to set up counterclaims that are undisputed or legally valid.
10. Compensation claims due to violation of contractual obligations and tortuous acts against the auctioneer are limited to wilful intent and gross negligence. This does not include acts damaging life, body and health nor violation of essential contractual obligations (obligations resulting from the nature of this contract, whose violation jeopardizes its objective) and damage caused by default. Liability in case of violation of essential contractual obligations is restricted to predictable loss therefrom. If liability for ordinary negligence has not been ruled out, such compensation claims expire one year after their origin.
11. Except as otherwise provided by law, the place of fulfilment and payment and the place of jurisdiction shall be our commercial domicile.
12. The ownership of a lot shall not pass to the buyer and the sold property shall not be made available to him until he has paid the amount due.
Storage, packaging, transport and delivery shall be at the expense and risk of the successful bidder. Goods are sent by mail as insured parcel. Any damage has to be adjusted with the postal authorities.
Delivery costs such as postage and packing expenses shall be borne by the buyer. The auctioneer is under no obligation to dispatch the goods.
If the buyer fails to pay for and collect the goods within ten days after date of the invoice, the auctioneer is entitled to have the goods stored at the buyer’s expense.
13. In the event that the buyer refuses to pay for the goods or to collect them, the buyer shall lose the right derived from the acceptance of his bid, and the item concerned can be put up for auction once again at the buyer’s expense. In this case, the buyer will be liable for loss incurred and shall not be entitled to receive surplus proceeds. Any further bids of the buyer will not be accepted. The auctioneer shall have the right to take legal proceedings for the recovery of the amounts due, in his own name and for the seller’s account.
14. Sale by private contract: The above conditions shall apply analogously to sale by private contract.
15. Auction of objects from the Third Reich: Whenever objects from the Third Reich are put up for sale by the Auction House, this will be done exclusively for purposes of civil education, to provide protection against unconstitutional activities, to promote art or science, research or teaching, to furnish information about present time occurrences or about events in history or for similar purposes.
16. Relevant statements and declarations from the seller to the auctioneer or to third parties must be made in writing.
17. Except as otherwise provided by law, the place of fulfilment and payment and the place of jurisdiction shall be our commercial domicile.
18. In the event that the buyer is a businessman or if he has no general place of jurisdiction in Germany or in another EU member state, our commercial domicile shall be the exclusive venue for the settlement of disputes arising out of this contract.
19. German law shall apply, unless special consumer protection provisions in the EU member state where the seller resides, are more favourable. The United Nations Convention on Contracts for the International Sale of Goods shall not apply.
20. The acceptance of any terms and conditions to the contrary or of the seller’s deviating terms will be subject to previous written approval by the Auction House. Our Terms and Conditions of Auction shall remain effective, notwithstanding any services rendered or received by the Auction House without reservations, although we have been aware of the seller’s terms and conditions to the contrary or of his deviating terms.
Auktionshaus Rütten GmbH