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General terms of service

This section explains the general terms of service of the website (the "electronic platform"). Any bid made during an auction implies that you agree to the entirety of these general terms of service; therefore, it is important that you read them carefully.

Fine Spirits Auction is a joint venture between the companies iDealwine and La Maison du Whisky.

The SARL International Wine Auction is a subsidiary controlled by iDealwine and managed by its lawful representative, Mr Cyrille JOMAND. Fine Spirits Auction acts as a technical service provider for SARL International Wine Auction by connecting the users of its electronic platform with that of SARL International Wine Auction and organising transport, delivery and invoicing on its behalf.

For auctions, contractual relations are exclusively formed between the users of the electronic platform and SARL International Wine Auction.

As a consequence, Fine Spirits Auction does not interfere with auction sales and more specifically, it does not intervene with the management of auctions, acceptance or refusal bids, organisation of a sale, adjudication, collection of payments, or setting additional fees as all of these services, actions and diligences are handled by SARL International Wine Auction.

When it comes to invoicing, Fine Spirits Auctions the recipient of an invoicing mandate which allows it to issue invoices in the name of SARL International Wine Auction conforming to the applicable fiscal regulations.

Registered Office: 190, rue d'Estienne d'Orves – 92700 COLOMBES - FRANCE
Registered Number: NANTERRE B 917 759 821
Tel : + 33 1 56 05 83 40
Fax : + 33 1 56 05 86 11
Email : [email protected]
Legal representative and Editor in Chief: Thierry BENITAH
Legal status: Société par actions simplifiée
Capital : 10 000 €
European VAT number: FR47 917 759 821

2. Name: International Wine Auction (IWA)
Registered Office: 190, rue d'Estienne d'Orves – 92700 COLOMBES - FRANCE
Registered Number: NANTERRE 754 038 856
Tel : + 33 1 56 05 86 10
Fax : + 33 1 56 05 86 11
Email : [email protected]
Legal representative and Editor in Chief: Cyrille JOMAND
Legal Status: Société à responsabilité limitée (a type of French limited liability company)
Capital: 10 000 €
European VAT number: FR13 754 038 586

The SARL International Wine Auction acts as an Opérateur de Vente Volontaire [a French operator of auction sales] governed by article L. 321-4 and following articles of the Code de commerce [French code of commerce] and given this title by Conseil des ventes volontaires de meubles aux enchères publiques [the French Auction Market Authority] (agrément n°2012-027).

This website is hosted by ASP SOURCING

iMX Solution which is provided by and owned by CODIX, along with CODIX is the website presentation tool used by FINE SPIRITS AUCTION.

Maximum Bid

The maximum bid is the highest price that you are willing to pay for the lot. The seller and other bidders cannot see your maximum bid. If you set a maximum bid on a lot, the system automatically places bids on your behalf using the bid increment amount. If another bidder places a bid that surpasses your maximum bid limit, we will notify you of it in order for you to be able to place another bid if you so desire. Your maximum bid is kept confidential until it is exceeded by another bidder.


These are public auctions that take place online organised by a licensed operator of auction sales (which is a new name for auction houses): International Wine Auction Company ("IWA SARL") LLC with licence number 2012-027.
You can find these types of sales on the electronic platform, under the name "Auction" or "Spirits auction".

Fine Spirits Auction is a website specialized in intermediation and information about spirits.

During Auctions, Fine Spirits Auction acts as the technical service provider for the licensed operator of auction sales, International Wine Auction (IWA SARL), a subsidiary of Fine Spirits Auction, providing it with an electronic platform to conduct public auctions at a distance.

Fine Spirits Auction acts as a technical service provider of the operator of auction sales, IWA, by organising auctions.

Registration on the Fine Spirits Auction electronic platform is required prior to participating in any auction. In order to take part in an auction, the following requirements must be met: - The bidder must be 18 years or older and fulfil the legal requirements of the delivery country, selected upon registration.
- The bidder must have the legal capacity required to consent to such an agreement, or have the authorisation of a parent, legal guardian, or attorney if the user is a minor or incapable.
- The bidder must comply with all terms herein.

When registering, clients are asked to provide their first and last name, mailing address and email address. This information is submitted to Fine Spirits Auction and IWA in order to be able to process your bids. Fine Spirits Auction may, for strictly commercial purposes, forward this information to its partners. Clients may, however, deny Fine Spirits Auction this privilege by informing Fine Spirits Auction while registering. Orders cannot be processed unless the client has submitted a valid credit card number, they are using this payment method. If the client wishes to use another payment method, they will need to contact Fine Spirits Auction’s Customer Service Department during registration who will send them the form and documents to be completed.

Please note that when registering, your delivery address must be within Fine Spirits Auction’s shipping area in order to receive delivery.

Fine Spirits Auction and IWA reserves the right to ask any potential buyer to prove their identity (with a national identity card or a passport) and their place of residence (with proof of address).
Fine Spirits Auction and IWA reserves the right to prevent any potential buyer from accessing the site with just cause, notably in the case that these general terms of service are not respected. They may ask for additional guarantees before accepting the bid.
Fine Spirits Auction and IWA reserves the right to prevent any potential buyer from accessing the site with just cause, notably in the case that these general terms of service are not respected. They may ask for additional guarantees before accepting the bid.

Lot Descriptions and Guarantees

The auction organiser is legally bound by lot descriptions. Buyers who wish to receive additional information may contact the organiser of the auction. Lots described in the catalogue will be present on the website during the auction. Potential buyers are invited to contact IWA, the operator of auction sales, or Fine Spirits Auction to obtain information concerning when details will be made public. The operator of auction sales guarantees that the spirits will be authentic and will conform to their published descriptions.However:

- information provided regarding levels, status of corks, capsules and labels are only indicative.
- the state/condition of corks cannot be guaranteed.
- the information on bottle, back and neck labels and corks only serve to identify the product.
- tasting characteristics for products purchased in auctions cannot be guaranteed.
- the state/condition of cases or cardboard boxes, in view of their fragility and the perishable nature of the material, are purely indicative.

The operator of auction sales cannot be held responsible at any time for any of the above-mentioned elements.

The starting bid, the price estimate and the time period for placing bids are indicated in the lots’ description. The bidder can start bidding by placing a bid based on the current price of the auctioned lot or by using the maximum bid feature by selecting a maximum bid amount. At the end of the bidding period, the highest bidder is declared the winner and will receive an email stating that they are the winner of the lot. The operator of auction sales authenticates the results and writes a transcript of the auction.

Placing a bid is an irrevocable and legal act: as a result, once an order is placed it cannot be cancelled or modified. However, an internet user can place higher bids in the event that the maximum price they had set is exceeded by the bid of another internet user. Fine Spirits Auction and IWA reserves the right to cancel an order or request a security deposit if it feels an order is exceptionally high.

Pursuant to the provisions of article L.221-28 of the French Code of Consumption, the orders resulting from these types of sales are definitive and cannot be cancelled.

As an exception to article L.221-28 of the French Code of Consumption, the purchaser benefits from a right to withdraw in the conditions mentioned hereinafter as soon as the auctions are entirely dematerialised, and the seller is a professional.

Buyers will also pay public auction fees added by the operator of auction sales who organised the auction: 16% excluding V.A.T. or 19.2% including V.A.T.. After the auction, all lots won by the same bidder are included in one invoice/order (bill of sale) and are payable to the operator of auction sales. Buyers will receive an email informing them of their order reference information.

Regardless of the country of origin of the bidder, the reference currency is the euro. Payment is due once the lot is awarded; any outstanding payment after 7 days will accrue interest at a rate equal to one and a half times the legal and most current interest rate referenced in France at the time. In addition, storage fees will be accrued at a rate of €0.1 per bottle and per day, taking effect on the 31st day following the date of the order confirmation.

If purchases have not been paid for within 15 days of the order confirmation, Fine Spirits Auction is be entitled to proceed to the automatic and direct debit of the amount owed from the bank account used when registering.

Fine Spirits Auction and International Wine Auction reserve the right to pursue any legal challenges against the defaulting buyer to recover any unduly paid amounts, interests, legal fees and any other costs and damages incurred.

In case of non-payment, a fee of 10% of the total amount of the order and a €75 fixed fee for administrative costs will be charged. Fine Spirits Auction and International Wine Auction reserve the right to pursue any legal challenges against the defaulting buyer to recover any unduly paid amounts, interests, legal fees and any other costs and damages incurred.

In the absence of payment by the winning bidder, after an unsuccessful formal notice, the good can be put up for sale again at the request of the seller, in the case of irresponsible bidding.

If the seller does not send their request within three months of the auction closing, Fine Spirits Auction and International Wine Auction are given a mandate to act in their name and on their behalf, either proceeding in cancelling the sale, or in completion and payment of the sale in question, and to request in addition and in both cases legal fees and any other costs and damages incurred.

Methods of Payment
We accept payment by card (both French and non-French cards). In accordance with current regulations, cash payments are only possible for orders of €1,000 or less.We do not accept cheques.
For all payments by bank transfer the bank details are :
France (all foreign currencies are accepted):
IBAN : FR76 3000 3043 8000 0200 6189 711

When lots are put up for sale at auction by people and entities that are not VAT registered, tax is only due on the buyer’s commission collected by the organiser of the auction (IWA) on the winning bid (margin system).
Professional (B2B) customers cannot recover the value added tax and it cannot be included on the invoice issued by Fine Spirits Auction. In the case of lots brought to auction by consignors who are liable for VAT, the common system applies. The indication of whether the VAT is refundable or non-refundable is displayed in the description of each lot brought to auction and on the invoices issued. When a client is logged in to his account, the VAT invoicing is dynamic, adapted to the professional or private status of the client and the delivery country. Once the order is confirmed, the shipping country cannot be changed.

Customers not resident in Metropolitan France Fine Spirits Auction customers not resident in Metropolitan France are informed that customs and excise duties and local taxes are not included in the prices shown on Fine Spirits Auction. They are charged to customers by Fine Spirits Auction or local authorities directly in accordance with the legislation in force. To learn more about these fees, clients can contact Fine Spirits Auction’s Customer Service Department.

Exports and imports The import of all goods into France and the export of all goods to other countries can be subject to the procurement of authorisation (export certificates, customs authorisation). It is the responsibility of the buyer to check any authorisations and formalities required by the relevant authorities of the country in question.

Lots cannot be delivered until payment is fully received. Lots can only be collected upon presentation of the receipt of sale from the operator of auction sales stating "paid". Buyers can use Fine Spirits Auction’s shipping services or they can pick up their lots directly from Fine Spirits Auction’s warehouse (see paragraph XII - Delivery and collection).
The transfer of ownership of a lot to the buyer is subject to the settlement of the price and costs pertaining to its sale. The risks and responsibility linked to a lot are transferred at the moment of their collection by the buyer or of their delivery to the buyer, as the case may be.

Fine Spirits Auction is a public, limited liability company governed by French law with its headquarters located at 190, rue d’Estienne d’Orves 92700 Colombes, France. It is registered with the trade and companies register of Nanterre under the number B431661628, and is represented by Monsieur Thierry BENITAH, its president.

The operator of auction sales, here SARL International Wine Auction (IWA), is located at 190 rue d’Estienne d’Orves, 92700 Colombes, France and it registered with the trade and companies register of Nanterre under the number 754 038 586 and is an operator of auction sales, licensed under the number 2012- 027. It is a company that habitually organises public auctions in accordance with the relevant statutory provisions, in particular law 2011-855 from 20 July 2011, represented by Mr Cyrille JOMAND, its manager.

The seller refers to the person who wishes to sell their spirits in the context of an auction organized by and who, for these purposes, stores their spirits at Fine Spirits Auction’s warehouses or entrusts a carrier to do so.
In the context of an online auction, Fine Spirits Auction provides the licensed operator of auction sales with an online platform built for, allowing it to perform public auctions by proxy. As such, Fine Spirits Auction acts as a technical provider for the operator of auction sales organising the auction. The statutory provisions L.321-1 to L.321-17 of the French code of commerce regarding sales at public auction apply to auctions held on the site.
Sellers accept the general terms and conditions listed below:

1 - Contractual relationships between the seller, Fine Spirits Auction, and the operator of auction sales

The signatory seller of the present deposit certificate grants Fine Spirits Auction the right to store and assess the deposited spirits for a minimum of 3 auction presentations. Fine Spirits Auction does not organise auction sales but makes its internet platform available to a licensed operator of auction sales in order to organise online auction sales. Before the beginning of the auction sale, the seller receives a selling mandate called "sale requisition" from the operator of auction sales. This mandate draws up lists of lots for sale with their description, their estimated prices, and their reserve price. The seller expressly confers on Fine Spirits Auction the right to advertise and/or photograph and reproduce, to engage any arrangement fees, handling, storage and shipping charges judged necessary and accepts that Fine Spirits Auction may be represented by any experts or specialists of its choosing.

2 - Ownership of stored property

Sellers guarantee Fine Spirits Auction and, when appropriate, the operator of auction sales, that as the uncontested owner of the property or as regular mandatory of the uncontested owner, they can validly deposit and transfer the property rights of the property offered for sale. They guarantee that the property offered for sale is in compliance with all French and European legal and regulatory provisions, especially those relating to custom regulations and tax provisions. They must guarantee that they have submitted all the information relative to the origin and authenticity of the property offered for sale to Fine Spirits Auction. When depositing spirits , a proof of identity is required and company registration certificate in the case that a professional is making the sale. The person depositing the goods must provide a written authorisation and a copy of the seller’s I.D. if the owner mandates them to do so.

3 - Estimation/reserve price

Spirits deposited for online auctioning will undergo a pre-sale assessment that will set the low and high estimates. The seller can set a reserve price which is the minimum price hat the goods can be sold at. The reserve price cannot be higher than the low estimate and by default this price is set at the low estimate. The seller can specifically ask for their property to be auctioned with no reserve price (the reserve price will be of €1); in this case no reclamation from the seller will be accepted if their property is sold at a price below the low presale estimate published.

4 - Bottle assessment

After deposit or shipment, Fine Spirits Auction’s experts appraise spirits.

If necessary, Fine Spirits Auction may call up an external expert, acting on its behalf. The descriptive elements such as the state of the labels, the measure of the fill level, the condition of the capsule, the bottling origin (merchant bottling, distillery bottling, reconditioned bottles, etc.) are determined during the evaluation. Fine Spirits Auction reserves the right to undertake all the necessary verifications to ascertain the spirit’s authenticity and, if necessary, withdraw it from the sale. Fine Spirits Auction may be obligated to remove from sale all bottles considered unsuitable for sale or consumption due to their condition (bottles with a level way below low shoulder, seepage past the cork, depigmentation, etc.). During assessment, if the level is deemed abnormally low for the vintage or the label is deteriorated, the lot’s reserve price will be lowered by 5 to 20% of its estimate.

Cork resistance is systematically tested for spirits bottled prior to the year 2000. Every bottle that has a depreciated or falling cork will be removed from sale. Fine Spirits Auction is exempted of all liability if corks do fall during the evaluation. What is more, Fine Spirits Auction reserves the right to remove plastic film from bottles if need be for the appraisal.

Fine Spirits Auction’s experts will divide the spirits into lots, unless the seller has previously formulated a specific request prior to the deposit or shipment of his spirits. After appraisal, you may ask for lots to be separated - depending on the average value per bottle - following the spirits third appearance at auction and following a price decrease.

When bottles are judged unsuitable for sale due to their state (see above), Fine Spirits Auction notifies sellers so they can collect their bottles or have them shipped - when possible - at their own expense within a period of 45 days. After this time, they agree for their bottles to be destroyed.

5 - Sales process

Auction sales are held online under the supervision of an operator of auction sales whose contact details are provided on the sales order signed by the seller. As acting technical provider, Fine Spirits Auction grants sellers’ access to its customer service.

The seller is notified that their spirits have been put for sale at auction by a sales order sent by email. This must be signed electronically and sent back as soon as possible. This order is valid for all auctions necessary for the sale of the lots concerned.

If the seller decides to remove their lots of spirits before or during the first auction, they will be liable to pay the administrative and appraisal fees. These will be calculated based on the sum of the low-price estimates of the bottles removed from sale.

Sale results
Sale results are emailed to sellers, within 48 hours of the sale’s closing date. Unsold lots are automatically reoffered for sale, unless the seller decides otherwise. The seller can choose to lower the reserve price or request his/her unsold spirits to be returned (see related delivery charges and conditions). If the spirits are unsold after three consecutive auctions, their reserve price will automatically be reduced by 10 %. After 6 auctions, unsold lots will be reduced by 10%, applicable to the already-lowered reserve price and not the initial price. For example: if a bottle with a low estimate of 100 euros does not sell after three auctions, its reserve price will be lowered to 95 euros. If the lot is unsold after 6 auctions, the lot will then be put for sale for 85 euros.

6 - Sales commission - miscellaneous costs

The operator of auction sales’ commission fee is 12.5% (pre-tax) or 15% (inclusive of tax) of the hammer price for spirits auctions in addition to any transport costs incurred in transporting the spirits to the Fine Spirits Auction warehouses. Advertisement and catalogue fees are not charged.

Storage is free during the first 6 months following the deposit. After six months, the lots will be removed from sale. The seller can then either collect his unsold lots or offer then for sale without a reserve price. If a response from the seller is not received, storage fees of 1 Euro (inclusive of tax) per month per bottle will be charged. Unsold bottles can be collected by their owner at Fine Spirits Auction’s warehouse by appointment or if necessary, a quote for shipping the bottles can be arranged.

7 - Payment to seller

Sellers will be paid 35 days after the end of auction. Payment is made by the operator of auction sales for online auction sales, either by cheque or bank transfer if the seller has provided their bank details beforehand.

For private sellers whose fiscal residence is in France, and in accordance with article 150 UA of the CGI, the capital gain realised by a seller upon the sale of their goods will be taxed to the rate of 36.2% (19% as income tax and 17.2% as social insurance contributions) when the amount exceeds €5,000 per lot. The total of the capital gain is reduced by 5% per year since the seller has owned the good, from the second year on (article 150 VC, I-5 subparagraph of the CGI). In the case of taxable capital gain, the seller must make the declaration within one month of the sale (article 150 VG, I-4° of CGI). Private individuals who are selling bottles and reside outside France are responsible for obtaining information about and complying with the local laws on capital gains tax.

8 - Insurance

Fine Spirits Auction is insured against the risks associated with shipping, handling, and conserving spirits , on the basis of the spirits’s estimated value. Therefore, if a bottle is broken by Fine Spirits Auction during its transportation or its storage, the seller will be reimbursed within 30 days, on the basis of the median estimate given to the seller reduced by sales expenses.

9 - Force majeure

Fine Spirits Auction renounces all responsibility for any failure to meet its contractual obligations in the case of unforeseeable circumstances or force majeure, including, but not limited to, disaster, fire, internal or external strike, internal or external power outages, and generally speaking any event that would impede the execution of services.

10 - Applicable law- Allocation of jurisdiction

All contracts between a seller, Fine Spirits Auction and the auction sales operator, qualified to operate public auctions in which the seller’s spirits are sold, in these general terms and conditions, will be governed by and construed in accordance with French law.

If no alternative solutions can be found, the parties agree to submit any dispute or litigation which may arise over the validity, the interpretation or of the application of the present contract to the Court of Nanterre in compliance with article L. 321-37 of the French Code of Consumption.

In accordance with the law, all actions of civil responsibility undertaken during auction sales at public auction shall expire after five years of the hammer date.

Fine Spirits Auction makes every effort to keep its online bidding services up and running. However, Fine Spirits Auction cannot be held liable if, due to technical difficulties, the system does not allow a bidder to place a bid in an auction. In the event of that technical failure prevents the proper execution of its services, Fine Spirits Auction will inform its users without undue delay.

All requests regarding the conformity of products shall be made upon receipt of the shipment to Fine Spirits Auction’s Customer Service Department. Reimbursements will not take place if the order to which it refers to was made more than 6 months before.

Fine Spirits Auction cannot be held responsible for simple typographical errors relating to the price or a description of a product in the text of a marketing email or on a page of the website.

Fine Spirits Auction shall not be responsible for any default in its contractual obligations due to a force majeure or fortuitous event, including, but not limited to, natural disasters, fires, internal or external strikes, internal or external black-outs and in general, any event that does not permit services to be successfully carried out.


In accordance with French ordinance n° 2009-879, dated 21st July 2009, it is illegal to sell alcohol to minors. Anybody placing a purchase bid therefore agrees to be at least 18 years old on the date they place the order and comply with the laws of the country of delivery of the spirits. Alcohol abuse is detrimental to your health. Please be careful and drink in moderation.

Under the law of Hong Kong, intoxicating liquor must not be sold or supplied to a minor in the course of business.

French Law for Data Protection and Liberties

While conforming to French Law 78-17, dated January 1978, and the European regulation General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) (regulation 2016/679, dated 27 April 2016), you are reminded that it is necessary to collect collected personal data to use the services offered by Fine Spirits Auction and IWA. You have the right of access, rectification, erasure and correction rights to portability of your own personal data. You can exercise this right by directly accessing your personal account online with your user ID and password.

You also have the right to request a restriction of processing or object to the processing of your personal data. You have the right to withdraw your consent to the processing of your personal data at any time

You can exercise this right by directly accessing your personal account online with your user ID and password. You can equally contact Fine Spirits Auction or IWA.

Finally, you also have the possibility to make a claim at the CNIL.
Contact Data Protection Officer 190 rue d’Estienne d’Orves, 92700 Colombes, France
[email protected]

Please note that certain information is mandatory and necessary for the processing of your request. Failure to answer a mandatory field may compromise the proper handling of your request.

All personal information provided is for Fine Spirits Auction’s use only as well as that of IWA. However, it may be shared for functional reasons only with its subsidiary IWA. You have the right to prohibit the sharing of information by notifying us during your registration. You have the right to deny this transmission by informing us during your registration.

Your personal information will be retained for however long is necessary to perform our services, unless:
- You exercise your right to have your data deleted as described below.
- A longer retention period is permitted or required by law or regulations. Please consult our page dedicated to protecting personal data..

Brand and Domain Name

The Fine Spirits Auction brand and domain names are trademarked by Fine Spirits Auction and are thus protected by the French Intellectual Property Code and by the rules governing competition.

Patents and Copyrights

The name, conception, layout, visual identity, software developments, pages source codes, content, comments and original illustrations of are the exclusive property of Fine Spirits Auction.

Electronic copies of some pages of the website or paper printing is only authorised by Fine Spirits Auction for private use of internet users. Any other use could constitute an infringement sanctioned by law.

Data Base

Fine Spirits Auction offers its customers access to a comprehensive database and spirit quotations that constitute an electronic database within the meaning of article 98-536, dated 1st July 1998.

As such, Fine Spirits Auction benefits from all copyright on this database and thus the exclusive right to use this asset. In accordance with the second paragraph of Article L. 122-5 of the Intellectual Property Code, any copies or duplicate of this database and, in particular, product files as well as actual and historic quotations, should always be subject to formal approval by Fine Spirits Auction whatever the use intended.

In connection with database producers’ rights (articles L. 341-1 and seq. of the Intellectual Property Code), Fine Spirits Auction benefits from database content protection, prohibiting any copies or use of a substantial part of the database including in particular, yet not exclusively, the actual quotations, historic quotations, notes and comments in the database.

All contracts established between a mandator or buyer and Fine Spirits Auction following current terms and conditions will be determined by and interpreted according to French law.

In case of litigation, the buyer is informed that it can in any case resort to conventional mediation with the French Consumer Mediation Commission or with the existing mediation bodies for the sector, or any alternative methods to resolve disputes.

The contact details and procedures for contacting the mediator are as follows
FEVAD Consumer Mediator
BP 20015 – 75362 PARIS CEDEX 8

You are also reminded that under article 14 of the EU Regulation No. 524/2013, the European Commission has set up an online dispute resolution platform, facilitating the settlement of online disputes between consumers and professionals in the European Union by extrajudicial means.

If no alternative solution can be found, involved parties agree to submit any dispute or litigation regarding the validity, interpretation, or execution of the contract:
1. to the commercial court of Nanterre for professional mandators or buyers
2. either to a jurisdiction pursuant to the code of civil proceedings, or to the home jurisdiction at the moment when the contract was concluded or when the tort occurred, for private mandators of buyers.


The clauses of the general terms of service are independent from one another. The invalidity of any clause does not render inapplicable any other clause.



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Storage & Delivery

Storage & Delivery

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Guarantee on the conduct of the auction and the regulations provided by the presence of an auctioneer