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To anticipate unpaid bills, it is always advisable to include a clause relating to late payment interest to make them run as soon as possible. As part of a share transfer operation, the transferor has sued the transferee in order to obtain the balance of the price. The question that arose was the following: when did the interest on arrears start to accrue?

Should the date stipulated in the contract or that of the summons for payment be retained? The appeal court considered that the interest had started on the day of the summons for payment, amounting to formal notice.

The Court of Cassation did not share this analysis. For her, the starting point for default interest was contractually included in the deed of assignment by the two protagonists. Therefore, their contractual will applied without formal notice.

The latter was not provided for in the act. In practice, the creditor can always insert a clause relating to late payment interest to make it run as soon as possible. It will thus be guaranteed against the risk of non-payment.

Grégory Damy , nice business law lawyer 2022