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The notary was not required to googlog his client

© Philippe Turpin / Photononstop

In October 2007, the Commercial Court of Montargis (Loiret) placed Pressigny Palettes and its manager, Eurico X, in liquidation. On March 26, 2014, Mr. X, although he does not have the right, sells a house, which depends on the assets of the liquidation, for a price of 40 000 euros, by authentic deed spent at Me David N, notary.

On April 15, 2014, the liquidation judge approves the liquidator Jean-Paul Z, to sell the house by public auction. The liquidator, noting that the house is already sold, assigns the seller, Eurico X, the buyer, Mrs. Y, as well as the notary, to the court of first instance of Paris, so that the one notes that the sale is not him opposable.
Customer's lie

The liquidator considers that the notary did not do the necessary research to ensure the effectiveness of his act, that is to say in this case, to verify that Mr. X could dispose of the property he was selling .

The notary replies that Mr X lied about his quality, claiming to be a maintenance agent, and not a manager of a company placed in liquidation. It states that it consulted, as it should, the media of legal publicity that are the Bulletin official of the civil and commercial advertisements (Bodacc) and the Register of trade and companies (RCS) of Infogreffe, but that the name Mr. X was not there. He explains that the mention of the collective proceedings concerning him was in the name of Pressigny Palettes, a company of which he had no knowledge.
Research accessible to all

The liquidator replies that he was required to perform all useful checks », and it was sufficient for him to consult the Internet: by typing the name of Eurico X on the Google search engine, he could make the link with the company Pressigny Palettes. It shows, by the production of screenshots, that the terms “Eurico X” refer to the website, whose consultation shows that he was a leader of Pressigny Palettes.

The liquidator concludes that by this simple search, accessible to all », the notary was able to make the link between Eurico X and the company Pressigny Palettes, then to consult the Kbis of this company, which would have revealed to him the existence of the collective procedure.
Legal publications

The court, which rules on March 25, 2016, gives reason to the liquidator, and holds the responsibility of the notary, on the basis of Article 1382 (now 1240) of the civil code. It condemns jointly Eurico X and Me N to pay him 20,000 euros. The Paris Court of Appeal, seized by the notary, confirms, September 5, 2017.

The notary appealed on points of law, arguing that he was not obliged to consult sites that were not official. The Court, which ruled on November 28 (2018), gives him reason: In so doing, while the notary was not obliged to carry out other research than those consisting of the consultation of legal publications “The court of appeal violated Article 1382 (now 1240) of the Civil Code. the Court of Cassation censors, and refers the parties to the Court of Appeal of Versailles.

On the same subject, read The notary must verify that the seller is not in liquidation

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