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Case Details

Case Details
National ID 15101
Member State Italy
Common Name S. Formisano v. S.n.c. Cantiere Navale Patrone Moreno di Moreno e Rolando
Decision type Other
Decision date 22/11/2000
Court Corte di cassazione (Supreme court)
Subject
Plaintiff
Defendant
Keywords

Unfair Contract Terms Directive, Article 1, 1.

1. The rule of the consumer forum (provided by the point 19, paragraph two, article 1469-bis of the Italian Civil Code) does not apply to the contractual obligations that have been undertaken between the parties before the enforcement of the article 1469-bis of the Italian Civil Code. Such article establishes that the competent judge is the one of the place where the consumer is resident or domiciled (i.e. “consumer forum rule”)
The plaintiff, S. Formisano, sued the S.n.c. Cantiere Navale Patrone Moreno di Moreno e Rolando before the Tribunale di Roma claiming that the general contractual conditions applied by the company were unfair and thus that they should be declared null and void pursuant to the article 1469-bis of the Italian Civil Code.
The S.n.c. Cantiere Navale Patrone Moreno di Moreno claimed that the Tribunale di Roma was not competent to decide in such case because the discipline of the consumer forum was not applicable. The Tribunale di Roma agreed with this argument and S. Formisano sued S.n.c. Cantiere Navale Patrone Moreno di Moreno before the Corte di cassazione to establish the competent judge (i.e. “regolamento di giurisdizione”)
The point 19, paragraph two, of the article 1469-bis of the Italian Civil Code is clear to say that the competent judge is the one of the place where the consumer is resident or domiciled (i.e. “consumer forum rule”).
In this decision, the Corte di cassazione stated that the consumer forum rule does not apply to the contractual obligations that have been undertaken between the parties before the enforcement of the article 1469-bis of the Italian Civil Code.
Such article has been enforced in 1996 with the adoption of the Law no. 52 of 6 February 1996 “Disposizioni per l'adempimento di obblighi derivanti dall'appartenenza dell'Italia alle Comunità europee” (“Legge Comunitaria 1994”).
This Law has introduced the articles from 1469-bis to 1469-sexies in the Italian Civil Code.
As a consequence, it is not possible to apply the discipline on unfair terms in consumer contracts and, specifically the provision about the consumer forum.
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