Certain comparative notes on electronic contract formation
Electronic contracts present trade law scholars with a multitude of issues concerning international private law, arising from the peculiarities of the online environment. However, as in traditional paper contracts, directives, model laws and conventions governing electronic commercial transactions still leave open such an important question as when is an electronic contract concluded. This article focuses on the offer and acceptance requirement using a comparative approach to explore how this issue is addressed in Russia as well as in other civil- and common-law jurisdictions. The paper compares different regulatory approaches taken by the EU and US on the formation of electronic contracts, highlighting their differences and the progress made towards convergence and consumer’s protection. The relevant law for each country is discussed in relation to two types of transactions: those concluded between qualified professionals or traders, i.e. so-called Business-to-Business (B2B), and those between qualified professionals and consumers, namely Business-to-Consumer (B2C).