Terms of delivery

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Conditions (or delivery , sale ) are Terms and Conditions , the supplier for transactions with their customers shall be used.


Terms of delivery arose from negotiations between the leading associations of industry and trade , so that they are usually uniform in one branch . They are agreed as general terms and conditions in the context of the sales contract. They regulate the obligations of the seller and buyer in connection with the delivery , in particular the distribution of costs and the transfer of risk for the object of purchase. If the buyer is a consumer , the delivery conditions are generally considered to be general terms and conditions, because they are pre-formulated contractual conditions for a large number of contracts that the supplier provides to his customers when the contract is concluded ( Section 305 (1) BGB ). Then the consumer as a customer is protected by the general terms and conditions of the BGB, so that in particular clauses surprising or ambiguous ( § 305c BGB) and inappropriately disadvantageous clauses ( § 307 para. 1 BGB) are ineffective and all delivery conditions of a judicial content control subject. Prohibited clauses are finally listed in § 308 and § 309 BGB. In the case of delivery conditions, indispensable legal regulations may not be deviated from at the expense of the consumer.

Payment terms, on the other hand, regulate the payment modalities associated with the buyer's obligation to pay .


In the purchase agreement, the seller can with the buyer a retention of title the supplier credit , payment terms , delivery time , delivery service , any picking , transport , the costs (calculation of - packaging , freight , insurance and transport costs ) and risk distribution ( transfer of risk ) and exchange opportunities regulate the purchase object. For example, if a delivery is made with the commercial clausefree domicile ”, then the seller of the goods pays the transport costs; if the delivery is " freight collect ", the buyer must bear all delivery costs from the dispatch station. Another generally applied delivery condition is " ex works ", where the buyer has to bear all shipping costs .

If no special delivery conditions are agreed, the statutory regulations apply, according to which goods debts are deemed to be debts to be collected . Because the place of performance is the place of business of the seller according to § 269 BGB . If the seller then dispatches the goods on behalf of the buyer, there are dispatch debts , so that goods debts in commercial transactions are dispatch debts in case of doubt.

Competitive factor

Price , product quality , customer service or delivery and payment conditions, among other things, serve as means in competition to secure or improve one's own market position . Delivery and payment conditions are part of performance competition and, like price and quality, can also influence the purchasing decision of market participants . They are therefore instruments of marketing and sales financing . Terms of delivery can promote customer loyalty , especially in the case of long-term obligations . Customer-friendly delivery and payment conditions can transform the status of walk- in customers into regular customers .


The usual delivery conditions in foreign trade are the Incoterms . As a commercial practice, they take into account the internationally more important transport problem and the documentation of the delivery using traditional documents that represent the goods as approved order papers . The 2010 revised Incoterms include 11 delivery conditions and are also subject to content control.

Individual evidence

  1. Rudolf Sachs, Guide to Foreign Trade , 1985, p. 38
  2. Jörn Littkemann / Michael Holtrup / Klaus Schulte, bookkeeping: basics - exercises - exam preparation , 2008, p. 139
  3. BGHZ 113, 106, 111
  4. Roland Eller / Markus Heinrich / René Perrot / Markus Reif (eds.), Compact Knowledge Risk Management , 2010, p. 189
  5. Christoph Schmitt / Martin Stange, General Terms and Conditions of Sale and Delivery (B2B) , 2016, p. 188