nl en

International Commercial Law


Admission requirements



The purpose of International Commercial Law is to provide an insight into how a company conducts its business in an international context. Attention is given to commercial contract drafting and to basic notions of (international) contracting (under U.S., U.K. and Netherlands law). The course consists of a number of various components such as: a) private (inter)national law relating to international contracts, and b) how to structure and to draft contracts in an international setting. These contracts include for example agency, franchise, acquisition, distribution and joint venture. The content of these contracts is also discussed on the basis of customary international standard contracts.

Course objectives

Objectives of the course
The principal objectives of this course are:

  • to have a feel for the problems faced by businesses which operate internationally from the perspective of opportunities and risks in the international arena;

  • to have brief knowledge of existing rules on applicable law and to be on the alert to the pitfalls of international contracting;

  • to early recognize the international dimension, and prepare for participation, in cross-border transactions and businesses, ensuring at least some familiarity with the concepts of foreign legal systems.

Achievement levels
The following achievement levels apply with regard to the course:

  • have insight into the system of legislation and regulations which are relevant when a business enters into an international transaction or undertaking;

  • be able to assess the relevant aspects of a case study, in particular to aspects of applicable law, common types of contract and awareness of differences of foreign law contracts and Dutch law contracts when those are in the English language; and

  • be able to draft and understand simple sales, agency, distribution or services contract in an international setting.


The timetable of this course can be found in uSis.

Mode of instruction

Combination of lectures and tutorials

  • Number of (2 hour) lectures: 5;

  • Number of (2 hour) interactive tutorials: 5, with a mix of theory and case discussion;

  • Names of lecturers: see above;

  • Required preparation by students: preparation of prescribed reading materials, case studies and any other assignments.

  • A student cannot be absent from the tutorials or the lectures . Presence at the lectures and tutorials is obligatory, in order to acquire the achievement level needed to effectively participate in the written exam.

Assessment method

Examination form(s)

  • written exam (80 points);

  • written assignments (10 points): students have to make a minimum of 3 out of 4 assignments and one of those (for everyone the same, or the next when that one has not been submitted) will be graded: fail (0 points), pass (5 points) or good (10 points);

  • contract negotiations and drafting in class and short (written) explanation, in teams of approx. 4 people (10 points). One of the questions of the exam will relate to this contract (10 points).

  • Examination is open only to students who have made at least 3 written assignments and who have passed for their graded assignment.

  • The assignments and the contract negotiations can not be retaken. The score earned on the assignments and the score earned on the contract negotiations will remain valid for the retake.
    The final grade is given if the student has achieved a score on all parts (i.e. assignments, contract negotations, and the written exam or retake).

  • If a student has not passed the course by the end of the academic year (2014/2015), any partial grades for written exam, written assignment and/or contract negotiations and drafting are no longer valid.
    Areas to be tested within the exam

  • The examination syllabus consists of the required reading (literature) for the course, the course information guide and the subjects taught in the lectures, the tutorials and all other instructions which are part of the course.

Areas to be tested within the exam
The examination syllabus consists of the required reading (literature) for the course, the course information guide and the subjects taught in the lectures, the seminars and all other instructions which are part of the course.


More information on this course is offered in Blackboard.

Reading list

Obligatory course materials


  • to be announced on blackboard

Course information guide:
to be announced on blackboard

to be announced on blackboard

Recommended course materials
to be announced on blackbaord


Students have to register for courses and exams through uSis.

Contact information

  • Coordinator: mr. M.P.P. van Buuren

  • Work address: Kamerlingh Onnes Building, Steenschuur 25, 2311 SE, Leiden

  • Contact information: see below

  • Telephone number: 071-527 7235

  • Email:


  • Institute: Privaatrecht

  • Department: Ondernemingsrecht

  • Room number secretary: C 2.02

  • Opening hours: 0.900-14.00

  • Telephone number secretary: +31 (0) 71 – 527 7235

  • Email:


Belangstellenden die deze cursus in het kader van contractonderwijs willen volgen (met tentamen), kunnen meer informatie vinden over kosten, inschrijving, voorwaarden, etc. op de website van Juridisch PAO.