Résumé de l’arrêt du 30 mai 2024 de la 3e chambre civile de la Cour de cassation

Résumé de l’arrêt du 30 mai 2024 de la 3e chambre civile de la Cour de cassation

Published on : 12/06/2024 12 June Jun 06 2024

In its ruling of 30 May 2024, the 3rd Civil Chamber of the French Court of Cassation applied for the first time the new rule on compulsory works insurance issued by the same chamber on 21 March 2024.

In this case, AXA FRANCE IARD appealed to the French Court of Cassation against a ruling by the Caen Court of Appeal ordering it and DELARUE COUVERTURE to pay compensation to two private individuals for damage to the roof of their house. The first ground for appeal was raised by AXA, which argued that insurance obligations do not apply to works existing before the start of construction, unless they are fully incorporated into the new work.

The 3rd Civil Chamber upheld this argument, stating that article 243-1-1 II of the Insurance Code provides that compulsory insurance covers damage to existing structures only if the damage to the existing structure is caused by a new structure that is technically inseparable from the existing structure, and that the new structure results from the total incorporation of the existing structure into the new structure. The Court states that these two conditions are cumulative.
This judgment is therefore a continuation of the case law of the 3rd Civil Chamber, set out in Cass. 3e civ. judgment, 21 March 2024, no. 22-18.694, published in the information bulletin. In this judgment, the chamber reversed its case law, stating that defects caused by items of equipment or additions that did not fall into the category of works could not be covered by the ten-year guarantee or the biennial guarantee enabling proper functioning, but by contractual liability under ordinary law. The ruling of 30 May 2024 therefore places a new limit on this ten-year warranty, since it does not apply to damage caused by the incorporation of a new structure onto an existing structure.

In conclusion, this decision by the 3rd Civil Chamber clarifies and reduces the scope of the ten-year guarantee, which had already been introduced by the decision of 21 March 2024.


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