Seller’s Remedies

What sellers remedies are available

The seller can have a lien on the goods or right to retain them for the price while he is in possession of them.

An unpaid seller has the right to retain possession of the goods until payment is made or price is tendered to the buyer in the following scenarios:

  • Where the goods have been sold without any stipulation to credit.
  • Where the goods have been sold on credit but the term of the credit has expired.
  • Where the buyer becomes insolvent.


The seller will lose his lien (control/ownership) when the whole of the price is tendered or paid, one of the terminating events in s43 occurs or an innocent third party acquires title free from lien under one of the exceptions under estoppel. (Please refer to Estoppel)

Termination of lien

  • The unpaid seller of goods loses his lien or right of retention when he delivers the goods to a carrier or other bailee or customer for the purpose of transmitting it to the buyer without reserving his right for the disposal of goods.
  • An unpaid seller will not lose his right to lien or retention of goods by the reason that he has obtained a judgement or decree of the price for the goods.

Deliver by instalments

  • Parties did not agree to part delivery –

Where an unpaid seller has made a partial delivery of goods, he may exercise his rights to lien or retention the remainder of the goods, unless the part delivery has been made under circumstances that show that they have waived the lien or right to retention. 

Right of stoppage in transit

When a buyer of goods has become insolvent, the unpaid seller who has already sent his goods for delivery can stop the delivery in transit, as long as the goods are in transit and have not arrived at the buyer, and the unpaid seller can retain the goods until the payment is made.

Duration of transit

  • Duration of a transit is deemed/ taken as from the time goods are delivered to a carrier until the buyer takes delivery of the goods. (they are in transit).
  • If a buyer or an agent of the buyer takes delivery of the goods at a place other than the appointed destination the transit comes to an end.

Personal Remedies (action for damages)

Action for the price:

  • When the property of the goods has passed to the buyer who wrongfully neglects or refuses to pay for the goods according to the terms of the contract, the seller can bring an action against the buyer for the price of the goods.
  • When the price is payable on a day irrespective of delivery, and the buyer neglects or refuses to pay such price, the seller can bring an action for the price.

Buyers lability for not taking delivery of the goods

When the seller is ready and willing to make delivery of the goods and requests the buyer to take delivery but the buyer does not take the delivery within a reasonable amount of time. The buyer is liable for the loss incurred by the seller due to his negligence or refusal to take delivery.


While every effort has been made to ensure the accuracy of the information provided in this article, it does not constitute legal advice and cannot be relied upon as such. Each legal case and issue may have unique facts and circumstances, as a result legalally does not accept any responsibility for liabilities arising as a result of reliance upon the information provided. For further help and guidance, you can always rely on and seek advice from our experienced lawyers.

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