November 22, 2012

Essay: the good faith.

I choose as topic the good faith. This is first and foremost a moral concept, it is a requirement of honesty, loyalty or sincerity. Good faith is an essential institution of social life, it is considered that the relationship between individuals must be imbued with this good faith. All legal systems attach a certain place and importance to it. However, this place is not the same in every legal system and the concept has different meanings.

The concept of good faith crossed through the ages and scored the different legal systems we know. The question is then, to what extent the differences in understanding the concept of good faith can be found in the application of contract law in the English and French legal systems ?

I will try to focus first on the difference in legal culture in the both legal systems. Is there a true principle of good faith in English law ? What is the importance of the concept of good faith in french civil law ? Then, I will focus on the usufulness and the application of goof faith in contract law. How do the two different légal systems apply the principle of good faith ? What is the influence of international law on the development of European contract law ?

The good faith is a very important and complex notion. This is a moral concept, a religious concept, the good faith has its origins in Roman law is the « Bona Fides ».

I find interesting to study a subject with so complex and distant origins and which still is an important issue in the national legal systems, as well as in European and international law.

Codes and conventions : Code civil, United Nations Convention on Contracts for the International Sale of Goods (CISG) – 1980, UNIDROIT Principles, Draft Common Frame of Reference.
Theses and comments : La règle morale dans les obligations civiles, Georges Ripert, 1939, Congrès de l’Association Henri Capitant des Amis de la culture juridique française, Louisiane, 18/22 juin 1992, « La bonne foi », Rapport français par Patrice Jourdain, Professeur à l’Université de Paris XII
Books : Beale, Bishop and Furmston ‘Contract Law – Cases and Materials’, (2007) 5th edn. OUP, Zimmerman and Whittaker ‘Good Faith in European Contract Law’, (2000), CUP 1 edn.
Cases : Walford v Miles (1992), Smith v Hughes (1871).

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