Purpose of the course
The purpose of the course is to allow students to achieve:
knowledge of the various doctrinal and jurisprudential opinions on the institutions of the Italian private law subject to course, along with comprehension of the arguments behind said opinions;
an initial ability to rework the above-mentioned opinions and arguments and apply them to cases;
an initial autonomy of analysis and construction of the rules of law affected by the institutions of Italian private law subject to course as well as of the theories related to such rules;
ability to speak properly, with an appropriate language, about the topics subject to course;
ability to autonomously apprehend features and utility of the institutions subject to course.
Binding and preparatory exams
Students are required to pass the exams of Istituzioni di Diritto Privato and Diritto Costituzionale before applying for the exam of Diritto Civile.
Moreover, due to the above-mentioned purpose of the course, students are also required, whenever they decide to apply for the exam, to know the rules of Italian private law concerning the institutions related to the object of the course (namely, contract and iura in re), even if they are not specifically referred to the institutions that are listed within the object of the course.
Object of the course
The whole course of Diritto Civile consists of two separate minor courses: the first one deals with the rules of the law of contracts in general, the second one deals with ownership and remaining minor iura in re.
The course on Law of contracts in general grants 9 ECTS credits, whereas the course on Ownership and iura in re grants 6 ECTS credits.
The course concerning Law of contracts in general particularly deals with the following subject matters:
1. concept of contract and different kinds of contracts;
2. requirements due to complete a valid contract and parties' autonomy;
3. contract and consensus: the various ways to complete a contract;
4. the concept of 'opzione' under the Italian Civil Code and other kinds of option;
5. negotiations and pre-contractual liability (the distinction between punctuations, so called 'minute' and agreements; duties of information; prospectus liability; validity rules v. liability rules; damages from pre-contractual liability);
6. legal and conventional rights of pre-emption; rights of first refusal;
7. standard terms of contract, unfair clauses, Consumer Code and so called 'third contract';
8. completion of contracts in a progressive way: preliminary agreements;
9. causation and consideration (the relationship between causation and the different kinds of contracts; qualification of contracts);
10. object of a contract;
11. form of contracts;
12. conditions and other non-mandatory elements of contracts;
13. interpretation of contracts; external application of clauses to contracts;
14. binding effect of a contract; right of withdrawal; penalty clause and 'caparre confirmatorie';
15. representation (contracts completed in name and on behalf of a third party);
16. counter declarations: shams and fiduciary agreements;
17. subjective changes to contracts (contracts completed in name of an appointee; assignment of contracts; contracts completed in favour of a third party);
18. contracts invalidity: voidity and annulment;
19. vices of consent;
20. non-performance and contractual liability; rescission for breach of contracts, remedies for non-performance;
21. supervening events: impossibility and frustration of contracts.
A. Gambaro - U. Morello, Lezioni di diritto civile (casi, questioni e tecniche argomentative), Giuffrè, Milano, 2013 (2a edition, revised and updated);
R. Sacco - G. De Nova, Obbligazioni e contratti, in Trattato di Diritto Privato (edited by Pietro Rescigno), Volume 10, Utet Torino, last edition.
The course on Ownership and iura in re particularly deals with the following subject matters:
1. goods (meaning of the term 'goods' and historical development of the concept; different kinds of goods; material goods v. immaterial goods; fungibles v. non-fungibles; divisible v. indivisibles; perishables v. imperishable);
2. assignment of rights to goods; new frontiers of the law of goods;
3. iura in re, iura ad rem and credit rights: iura in re as an organizing class of rights (features and purpose);
4. the so called numerus clausus of iura in re;
5. ownership (meaning; features and purpose; acta ad emulationem; the various forms of ownership within the objective and subjective perspective; conformation of ownership; 'new properties'; the ownership within the law concerning building of real properties; legal physical distance between immovable; different ways to acquire ownership; ownership protection);
6. obligationes propter rem;
9. encumbrances on properties (the so called 'fondo patrimoniale', trust and the so called 'atto di destinazione');
10. the right to possess (meaning and requirements; the difference between the right to possess and the right to detain; the different ways to acquire the right to possess; relationships between owners and holders of a right to possess; the effects of the right to possess: adverse possession and the so called 'acquisto a non domino'; protection of the right to possess).
A. Gambaro - U. Morello, Trattato dei diritti reali (Volume I - Proprietà e possesso - Edizione ad uso degli studenti), Giuffrè Milano, 2010 (limited to the following chapters and sections:
Chapter I - Section I: I diritti reali come categoria ordinante;
Chapter I - Section II: Diritti reali e diritti di credito;
Chapter I - Section III: Tipicità e numerus clausus dei diritti reali;
Chapter II - Section V: La proprietà;
Chapter III - Section VI: Il possesso;
Chapter V - Section 11: Gli acquisti a non domino;
Chapter VI - Section 17: L'usucapione;
Chapter VII - Section 19: Tutela della proprietà: I rimedi generali).
A. Gambaro, I beni, in Trattato Cicu-Messineo, Giuffrè, Milano, 2012 (limited to the following chapters:
Chapter II: I beni, i soggetti e le risorse;
Chapter IV: Le frontiere del diritto dei beni).
Different ways to apply for the exam
The exam of Diritto Civile (which grants 15 ECTS credits as a whole) consists of a written paper and two oral examinations (one for Diritto Civile I - on the Law of contracts in general - and the other one for Diritto Civile II - on Ownership and iura in re).
Students are required to pass the written paper before applying (at their choice) for one of the two oral examinations.
Written paper deals with the rules of contracts in general (Italian Civil Code, Book IV, Title 2, articles from 1321 to 1469 c.c.) and it consists of 15 multiple-choice questions (with 4 alternative answers for every question).
Written paper lasts 30 minutes.
Students are allowed to use non-commented and non-annotated Italian Civil Codes during the written paper exam. Books on Civil Codes that include schemes and charts are not allowed too.
Students shall pass the written paper if they correctly answer to at least eleven (11) questions of the fifteen (15) questions that compose the paper.
No preferential treatments are granted to students attending the course, as far as the mark of the written paper is concerned.
No peculiar benefits are granted to students if they do answer correctly to more than 11 answers, as far as the mark of the oral examinations is concerned.
Once a student passes the written paper she will be allowed to apply for any of the oral examinations fixed during the corresponding term for exams.
For this very purpose, please note that there are two different terms for exams: namely, the first one (so called Winter Term) that starts in December and ends in February, the second one (so called Summer-Autumn Term) that starts in May and ends in September. Therefore, exempli gratia, if a student passes the written paper at the first written paper exam in December (during the Winter Term), she will be allowed to apply for every oral examination fixed within December and February (but not beyond), while if she passes the written paper at the first written paper exam in May (Summer-Autumn Term), she will be allowed to apply for every oral examination within May and September (but not beyond) .
If a student does not pass a whatsoever written paper she can apply for the next written paper anyway.
Written-paper suggested books
In order to pass the written paper students are required to deeply study the articles of Italian Civil Code on the law of contracts in general (namely, artt. 1321-1469 c.c.), as well as to read about the institutions related to said articles in a general handbook of Istituzioni di Diritto Privato.
P. Trimarchi, Istituzioni di diritto private (Giuffrè, Milano, last edition) is suggested as handbook for this very purpose.
Once she has passed the written paper, at her discretion, a student can apply for the oral examination on Diritto civile I and/or Diritto civile II.
As a matter of fact, both lessons-attending and lessons-non-attending students can apply for the oral examination dividing it in two parts (namely, one which grants 9 ECTS credits and the other one which grants 6 ETCS credits) or facing it as a whole (meaning to deal with a sole oral examination which grants 15 ECTS credits).
Please note that, even in case of division, students must have passed the written paper before applying for the first oral examination.
Once a student has passed one of the two oral examinations (namely, Diritto civile I rather than Diritto Civile II), she can apply for the remaining oral examination of the case without applying for a new written paper.