What online-sellers need to know

Legal guarantee and Damages


In general, even if you are selling items over the internet as a private person, you are responsible for the item being free from any defects. Between two private individuals, the legal guarantee can be excluded.

From the perspective of the seller, when selling used items it is recommended to refer to their condition.


If you sell defective items, even though you know about the defect or it should have been apparent to you, the contract is voidable for mistake of fact and you may be liable for damages. In this case, not even the exclusion of legal guarantee helps.


Shipping and place of performance


If you want to charge shipping costs, you must mention this in your offer. Also you should specify whether the product will be collected from you or will be shipped to the buyer. From your perspective as a seller, it is certainly advantageous to arrange postal delivery, because then you only have to hand over the goods to the carrier. In this case, under Austrian law, the buyer bears the risk if anything should go wrong during transport. That would not be the case if it’s a contract between a trader and a private person. 


Note: No right of withdrawal for private contracts!


Updated on 09.01.2015

Printer-friendly versionPrinter-friendly version