All Hope May Not Be Lost For a Seller of Goods to an Insolvent Buyer


In these days of economic uncertainty and write-offs, sellers should be aware of their right under Section 2-705 of the Uniform Commercial Code (UCC) to stop the delivery of goods in transit to an insolvent buyer who has not taken physical possession of the goods. “Insolvent,” within the meaning of the UCC, means that a buyer has “…generally ceased to pay debts in the ordinary course of business other than as a result of bona fide dispute ….” In some cases, litigation may be necessary to determine the issue of insolvency. Additionally, a buyer may refuse or defeat a demand to stop goods in transit where (a) it has actually received the goods in question, (b) a bailee of the goods (other than a carrier) acknowledges it is holding the goods for the buyer, (c) a carrier, through reshipment or warehousing, makes such acknowledgment to the buyer, or (d) the buyer has negotiated a negotiable document of title to the goods.

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DISCLAIMER: Because of the generality of this update, the information provided herein may not be applicable in all situations and should not be acted upon without specific legal advice based on particular situations.

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