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Modes of delivery

Delivery of goods may be of three kinds
  • Actual delivery
    • The term ‘actual delivery’ may be defined as the delivery where the goods are handed over by the seller to the buyer or his authorised agent. In other words, when the goods are physically put in possession of the buyer, the delivery is said to be actual.
Example

Amar sold 10 tins of oil to Akbar and delivered the same to him. In this case, there is an actual delivery of oil from Amar to Akbar.

  • Constructive delivery
    • The term ‘constructive delivery’ may be defined as the delivery when a third person in possession of the goods acknowledges holding the goods on behalf of the buyer. Sometimes, at the time of sale, the goods are in possession of a third person (a bailee, such as godown keeper, carrier, etc.) who acknowledges to the buyer that he holds the goods on the buyer’s behalf. In such cases, the delivery of the goods is said to be a constructive delivery.
Constructive delivery may happen in the following cases
  • Where the seller in possession of the goods agrees to hold them on behalf of buyer
  • Where the buyer is in possession of goods and the seller agrees that the buyer holding the goods is the owner
  • Where a third person in possession of goods acknowledges to the buyer that he (the third person) holds the goods on behalf of the buyer
Example

Amar sold to Akbar 50 bags of rice which were in possession of Anthony, a warehouseman. Amar ordered Anthony to transfer the rice to Akbar. Accordingly, Anthony transferred the rice, in his books, in Akbar’s name. In this case, there is a constructive delivery of goods from Amar to Akbar.

  • Symbolic delivery: The term ‘symbolic delivery’ may be defined as the delivery by doing an act which has the effect of putting the goods in possession of the buyer. In other words, when the goods are not physically delivered to the buyer but are delivered by an indication representing the goods, it is called symbolic delivery, e.g., the delivery of the keys of the godown in which the goods are lying, the transfer of documents of title to the goods (e.g., railway receipts, bill of lading, delivery orders, title deeds, etc.). Such a type of delivery is made when the goods are bulky or incapable of actual delivery.
Example

Amar sold all the fans lying in his godown to Akbar, and Amar delivered the keys of his godown to Akbar in order that he may get the fans from the godown. In this case, there is a symbolic delivery of fans from Amar to Akbar.





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