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Old 08-02-2021, 09:55   #1
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Do I need a lawyer with Amel contract?

Hello. I have a plan to buy a new Amel yacht.

Advise me please, do I need French lawyer to avoid any hidden problems?

Describe please your buying experience with Amel shipyard.
Thank you
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Old 09-02-2021, 10:32   #2
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Re: Do I need a lawyer with Amel contract?

Ça pourrait être une bonne idée, même si tu comprends le français. French forums are full of tales of woe associated with "hidden vices" and such in boat transactions. Before you hire one, ask about how much they'd charge, however. It might be sufficient to just have one read through the contract for you, to warn you of anything they think might be funky. That shouldn't be too expensive.
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Old 09-02-2021, 14:24   #3
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Re: Do I need a lawyer with Amel contract?

First rule of contracts is do not EVER sign a contract until you clearly understand everything that is in it. If you do NOT understand, then hire a lawyer to explain it to you!
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Old 09-02-2021, 14:29   #4
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Re: Do I need a lawyer with Amel contract?

I placed an order with Amel for a new Amel 50 in November 2020. Amel's contract is written in plain English and French, and is easy to understand. I didn't feel the need to use a lawyer.
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Old 09-02-2021, 14:35   #5
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Re: Do I need a lawyer with Amel contract?

No one in the history of the world NEEDED a lawyer
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Old 09-02-2021, 14:50   #6
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Re: Do I need a lawyer with Amel contract?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Usersail View Post
Hello. I have a plan to buy a new Amel yacht.

Advise me please, do I need French lawyer to avoid any hidden problems?

Describe please your buying experience with Amel shipyard.
Thank you
I'm not sure if you have seen this thread, but there are a few cruisers here who have recently ordered / received new Amel yachts:

https://www.cruisersforum.com/forums...ml#post3339168

Maybe there is some helpful info for you there too
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Old 05-03-2021, 06:08   #7
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Re: Do I need a lawyer with Amel contract?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Usersail View Post
Hello. I have a plan to buy a new Amel yacht.

Advise me please, do I need French lawyer to avoid any hidden problems?

Describe please your buying experience with Amel shipyard.
Thank you
Be careful, Amel deceives buyers, especially if you are not French.
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Old 05-03-2021, 06:39   #8
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Re: Do I need a lawyer with Amel contract?

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No one in the history of the world NEEDED a lawyer
Guess you have never been sued or had to negotiate a complex business contract.

When "the other guy" has a lawyer or sends you a contract to sign that was prepared by a lawyer then you do NEED a lawyer or run the risk of getting had.
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Old 05-03-2021, 07:55   #9
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Re: Do I need a lawyer with Amel contract?

@Factor is flat out wrong.

@skipmac is exactly right.

No, I'm not an attorney.

New Amels aren't exactly the same cost as a slurpee from 7/Eleven. What's a couple of hundred dollars when you're buying a new boat?

Save some possible heartache and hire a lawyer to review the contract. Try to find one that knows French law, as I suspect that the jurisdiction of the contract. Hopefully, you'll never need to know what the contract says after you leave port.
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Old 05-03-2021, 13:29   #10
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Re: Do I need a lawyer with Amel contract?

It is uncommon for a company to write a fair contact. It's a big purchase. I would suggest have a lawyer read it and modify it if it is a maize or difficult to understand. I doubt I have ever signed a contract as presented on a big sale or purchase.

In similar situations, I write down what I have been told by the sales people and what my expectations are of the purchase... Price including all taxes and extras, description of what your buying, warranty - how, by whom, wherever I am, how quickly, standards, acceptance, delivery etc...... Write down pretty much everything that is in your head when you imagine the sale and service and give that to the lawyer and ask them to note anything that doesn't support this. Then either draw a big line through or edit the sections you don't like, sign and submit it and see what happens. They probably will accept some of your changes but not all, then you can decide if that's acceptable or not to you and maybe you have to discuss with them what you don't like and come up with different wording that is acceptable to both of you or you can accept their terms.

To me a contract is a negotiation of sale, until signed by both parties it is not a contract, so negotiate, it's not all about price, the piece of paper sets out what you get for your money in sale and service.

Most contracts state that any verbal or other communication of the offer outside of what is written in the contract does not form part of the contract. So if you were offered something and it's not written in THAT document they are under no obligation to give it to you. Make sure it is.

P.S. contracts are more easily understood these days and you may be able to do it yourself. Be wary of contracts that keep referring to other sections of the contact that then refer to others and lead you to jump from page to page or continually refer to other documents some can be a maize, maybe on purpose.
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Old 05-03-2021, 13:46   #11
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Re: Do I need a lawyer with Amel contract?

Personally I would be most surprised if a company like Amel would amend a standard contract just because the lawyer of a prospective buyer finds something he doesn’t like. For sure, the seller’s contract wasn’t put together by the tea lady and I would predict that Amel wouldn’t waste any time recommending that the buyer consider an alternate boat builder. But that’s just my uninformed opinion.

But if it is true that Amel sets out to deceive prospective buyers as has been mentioned above (not my perspective), having a lawyer on your side is probably a good idea.

And if I was AndreNordic I would also be looking to have one on standby, just in case.
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Old 05-03-2021, 13:49   #12
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Re: Do I need a lawyer with Amel contract?

There's nothing complex in the Amel contract. It's seven pages in total. There are no references to other parts of the contract, or (except for the guarantee part) external documents. It's just the following, written in plain English and French:

* Your name and contact details.
* The model of boat you've ordered.
* The expected delivery date and place.
* The price.
* The dates payments are due.
* The dates you need to inform Amel which options you want by.
* That you agree to Amel using your personal data as necessary.
* What's provided with the delivery of the boat.
* That you agree to have insurance in place on delivery.
* That if you don't pay on time, Amel may charge you for storage, and if you still don't pay Amel may terminate the sale.
* Details of the two year guarantee, and which items are excluded. This comprises the largest part of the contract. This part references various parts of the French civil code, and is the only part of the contract that references external sources. The sections of the civil code referenced are provided, including an English translation.
* That the boat is delivered without VAT being paid, and you agree to pay the VAT if applicable.

It's a normal contract for Europe. It's all very straightforward, and perfectly understandable to any intelligent person. It has none of the fancy incomprehensible legalise that contracts in the USA tend to have. The word 'whereas' appears nowhere in it.
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Old 05-03-2021, 14:08   #13
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Re: Do I need a lawyer with Amel contract?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Andre Nordic View Post
Be careful, Amel deceives buyers, especially if you are not French.

Would you care to give us more details?
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Old 05-03-2021, 14:15   #14
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Re: Do I need a lawyer with Amel contract?

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Originally Posted by CassidyNZ View Post
Personally I would be most surprised if a company like Amel would amend a standard contract just because the lawyer of a prospective buyer finds something he doesn’t like. For sure, the seller’s contract wasn’t put together by the tea lady and I would predict that Amel wouldn’t waste any time recommending that the buyer consider an alternate boat builder. But that’s just my uninformed opinion.
In my case they were willing to make some small changes to the payment schedule, so that I'd have enough time to organise a dividend from my company to make the first payment. This was a matter of a few days' grace. For larger contract changes, you may well be right. Amel have a substantial backlog of orders, and have been steadily increasing their prices over the last couple of years. They're probably not desperate enough to take on difficult customers.

Quote:
Originally Posted by CassidyNZ View Post
But if it is true that Amel sets out to deceive prospective buyers as has been mentioned above (not my perspective), having a lawyer on your side is probably a good idea.
If you so much as suspect that anyone sets out to deceive prospective buyers then you should have nothing to do with them in the first place, lawyers or not.
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Old 05-03-2021, 14:24   #15
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Re: Do I need a lawyer with Amel contract?

Although not an Amel, we bought a new build from a French boatyard. Used a French lawyer and felt that spending 0.5% of the purchase price to be properly protected from, for example, risks of the company becoming insolvent after receiving deposit but before delivery etc was a good investment.

There are a variety of French tax breaks related to lease/purchase that save on VAT etc so you probably can end up recovering more than just the lawyers fees.

Best of luck - tremendous boats although not my specific cup of tea...
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