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arras

substantivo

full

earnest payment

noun

Comparative law notes

There are two types of "arras" under Brazilian law: i) "arras confirmatórias" (sections 418 and 419 of the Brazilian Civil Code): earnest money that is paid to bind the parties to the agreement and prevent the parties from withdrawing from it. If the party who paid the earnest money withdraws from the contract, the other party can keep the money. If the party who received the earnest money withdraws from the contract, it must return to the other party twice the amount received. In either case, the injured party has the right to claim further damages; ii) "arras penitenciais" (section 420 of the Brazilian Civil Code): earnest money that serves as punishment in case of nonperformance of the contract. If the party who paid the earnest money withdraws from the contract, the other party can keep the money. If the party who received the earnest money withdraws from the contract, it must return to the other party twice the amount received. In either case, the earnest money that was paid serves as preliquidated damages, so no further damages can be claimed.

Definitions of earnest payment

money paid by the buyer to the seller, especially in a real property transaction, to show that the buyer is serious about following through with buying the property; if the buyer ends up buying the property, the money acts as a first payment, and if the buyer eg breaches the contract or acts in bad faith, the money can be kept by the seller

The failure by a purchaser to close on the sale of the property within the allowable period may result in the forfeiture of the entire earnest payment.