Dr. Francisco Valenzuela of the School of Law of the Universidad Católica del Maule, explained the figure conceived for the first time in classical Roman Law.
Dr. Francisco Valenzuela, an academic from the Universidad Católica del Maule (UCM) gave a talk on the loss or destruction of the thing purchased and its links to the concept of «Liability without fault» at the VIII Congress on General Principles and Roman Law, that took place in Buenos Aires, Argentina.
The expert participated remotely in the event, organized by the Universidad de Flores and the Professor Ángel Lapieza Elli Institute for Roman Law, Classic Languages , and Latin Culture Studies. The trans-Andean campus published the content of the talk in a compilation entitled «Study on General Principles and Roman Law,» downloadable on the Internet.
“Liability without fault, in a very generic way, is a kind of aggravated responsibility imposed in certain hypotheses. This article deals with one of those hypotheses in a particular contract, which is the sales contract”, stated the also Ph.D. in Roman law.
In liability “without fault” or “strict” liability, guilt does not correspond to an element that necessarily results in the duty to indemnify. In other words, the behavior —unlike the general model —is not linked to the attribution of blame.
“This is an aggravated liability, which prevents the subject from proving that he acted without fault to avoid being responsible. In most trials, people can try to prove that they acted without fault in order to be released, but in this case, as the liability is strict or without fault, that possibility is prevented,» said the academic belonging to the Department of Social Sciences and Economics from the university.
Although liability without fault —as it was conceived in classical Roman law— is not expressly contemplated in the Civil Code, it is implicit in some cases.
«My article is not of modern law, nor does it make the comparison with the current law its focus, but there are connections. We could say that the presented discussion contributes to a better understanding of the provisions of article 1820 of the Civil Code or of its historical origin,» said the author regarding the statement that attributes to the seller the loss or deterioration until the delivery of the item to the buyer; unless the parties agree otherwise or the buyer is in arrears to receive the purchased item.»
«In modern law, there is no liability for custody. The seller’s custodiam praestare disappeared in modern codes. That explains, to some extent, certain imbalances that did not occur in classical Roman law. Where this institution, as it were, compensated the attribution of risks to the buyer,» pointed out Dr. Valenzuela, who based his writing on the results of his doctoral thesis.