The Doctrine of Good Faith in German Contract Law

Werner F Ebke and Bettina M Steinhauer

in Good Faith and Fault in Contract Law

Published in print August 1997 | ISBN: 9780198265788
Published online March 2012 | e-ISBN: 9780191682964 | DOI:
The Doctrine of Good Faith in German Contract Law

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This chapter discusses contract law as set forth in the German Civil Code (Bürgerliches Gesetzbuch). The first part focuses on the judicially created cause of action of breach of contract. The second part discusses the development of secondary contractual obligations. In the third part, cases involving the doctrines of impracticability and of frustration of purpose, change of economic circumstances, and mutual error are analysed. Throughout, the chapter emphasizes the historical and theoretical aspects, as well as the practical implications of the doctrine of good faith in German contract law.

Keywords: Civil Code; breach; contract; contractual obligations; good faith; impracticability; frustration; purpose; mutual error

Chapter.  8869 words. 

Subjects: Civil Law

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