This Section does not apply to transfers made under the special rules governing the transfers: 


(a) of instruments such as negotiable instruments, documents of title or financial instruments, or 


(b) of rights in the course of transferring a business.




Some types of assignment of rights are normally subject to very specific rules under the applicable law, and are therefore not governed by this Section.


1. Transfer of instruments governed by special rules


The transfer of certain types of instrument governed by special rules are outside the scope of this Section. This applies for instance to negotiable instruments, such as bills of exchange, that are usually transferred by endorsement or delivery of the document, and which are subject to further distinct rules, e.g. concerning defences that would have been available to the transferor. This exclusion also applies to documents of title, such as bills of lading or warehouse receipts, and financial instruments such as stocks and bonds. The transfer of such instruments are all normally subject to specific rules. 


This does not exclude the possibility that such rights, in certain jurisdictions, could also be transferred by a normal assignment, which would then be subject to this Section.


2. Transfer of a business


Another exclusion is assignment made in the course of transferring a business under special rules governing such transfers, as may happen in the case of the merger of companies. The applicable law often provides for mechanisms that cause all rights and obligations, under certain conditions, to be transferred in their entirety by operation of law. 


Article 9.1.2(b) does not prevent this Section from applying when certain rights pertaining to the transferred business are assigned individually. On the contrary, the mere transfer of shares in a company may fall under Article 9.1.2(a) and therefore not be covered by this Section.




1. Company A is transferred to company B. If the otherwise applicable law provides that all rights pertaining to the former company are automatically transferred to the latter, the Principles do not apply.


2. The initial facts are the same as in Illustration 1, but B is not interested in taking over a specific claim against customer X, and prefers that right to be assigned to company C. This particular transfer is subject to the Principles.

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