The efficacy of the preliminary contract and its relation with the final contract

Through judgement no. 6093, issued on 5 June 2012, the Court of Cassation intervened to clarify certain legal problems underlying the relation existing between the preliminary contract and the final contract.

More specifically, the Supreme Court, having been asked to issue a ruling on a case of future sale of real estate, carried out an analysis to establish whether the preliminary contract only produces the reciprocal obligation of the parties to enter into the final contract, the provisions of which might not conform with those agreed between the parties in the preliminary contract, or whether, conversely, it continues to be the sole source of contractual rights and obligations between the parties.

In the case examined by the court, two parties had entered into a preliminary contract the subject of which was the future sale of land with annexed building. The final contract subsequently entered into by the same parties did not contain any reference to a specific parcel which had, conversely, characterised the subject of the preliminary contract…

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