Christie’s wins fight in France to charge resale right on buyers not sellers
Art Business

Christie’s wins fight in France to charge resale right on buyers not sellers

Christie’s saleroom in Paris. The auction house has won its appeal in the French supreme court to overturn a ruling that Droit de Suite charge must be paid by vendors. The firm is now expected to start charging the fee to buyers. Image: Erwmat via Wikimedia commons. Christie’s has succeeded in overturning a law in France that insists the Artist’s Resale Right be paid by vendors. The ruling by the Supreme Court in Paris means that the levy can now be transferred to buyers. Unlike in the UK where auctioneers typically charge ARR to buyers rather than sellers, in France Droit de Suite (as it is known) is traditionally applied to the vendor. According to the wording of the French law, the charge should be made to the seller ‘without exception’. Christie’s challenged this convention in 2009 when it demanded that buyers pay the resale rights owed to contemporary artists in the landmark Yves Saint Laurent sale in Paris. It sparked a long-running legal case, brought by the dealers’ associations Comité Professionnel des Galeries d’Art (CPGA) and Syndicat National des Antiquaires (SNA) which claimed that Christie’s was gaining a competitive advantage. In light of the proceedings, the firm reverted […]

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