Terms and Conditions of Business


Within these Terms and Conditions, the following definitions apply:

  1. "auctioneer" means Donaldson & Company Auctioneers and Valuers Ltd, referred to as Donaldson & Company in marketing material
  2. "purchase price" and "hammer price" refer to the amount stated by the auctioneer as bidding closes and the hammer is brought down. A purchase price is set at or above any reserve and does not include any Value Added Tax owed or applicable premiums
  3. "the vendor" is the seller of goods, authorized by the Auctioneers to sell such goods under the terms of this document

  1. Donaldson & Company Auctioneers and Valuers Ltd are located at Customs House 65-67 Commercial Street, Leith, Edinburgh, EH6 6LH.
  2. The Auctioneer acts as an Agent of the Vendor to sell goods which may have been entrusted to the Auctioneer for the purpose of selling. Any Buyer acknowledges that any liability arising under these terms are the liability of the Vendor, not the Auctioneer.
  3. Person(s) enter company property at their own risk. Donaldson & Company Ltd assume no responsibility for any accident, injury, damage or loss, to any person(s) or goods, howsoever caused, on company premises.
  4. The Auctioneer reserve the right to: refuse admission to, or eject from, the saleroom and building it is situated within any person(s); regulate the amount of biddings; refuse the bid of any person(s); alter the arrangement of the lots, sell multiple lots as one lot or in any way they see fit and appropriate, withdraw any lot(s), and make alterations or additions to these conditions at the time of sale. In any matter which arises during or out of sale, the Auctioneer is considered the sole arbiter.

  6. All prospective Buyers must register with Donaldson & Company Ltd in order to obtain a Buyer's number prior to purchasing any lot(s). Donaldson & Company Ltd reserve the right to request a piece of formal personal identification before issuing a buyer number.
  7. A Buyer is deemed to be the person who makes the highest acceptable bid, at the discretion of the Auctioneer, signaled by the fall of the hammer. Should a dispute occur as to the highest bidding either during or immediately after the sale of any lot, the Auctioneer retains the right to put the lot up for sale a second time, and any number of subsequent times, should further dispute occur.
  8. All Buyers are liable for a Buying Fee which is charged on the sale price of each lot, whether sold by auction or in a private sale, by the Auctioneer. This fee stands at 18% of the sale price plus VAT and is payable to Donaldson & company Ltd and retained by them.
  9. VAT or Value Added Tax is applicable on all lots unless otherwise stated in the auction catalogue. VAT is charged at the current, government-set rate and will appear on any buyer's invoice. VAT is unable to be reclaimed under any circumstances. All lots are sold within the Auctioneer's Margin Scheme.
  10. Prior to any lot(s) being collected, the Buyer must pay the Auctioneer the full purchase price, plus Buying Fee plus VAT. Payments must be made on the day of the sale by cash, credit/debit card or bank transfer. Payments in excess of £2000.00 are not accepted in cash. Credit card payments are accepted from Visa and MasterCard. American Express is not accepted. Payment by Delta, Switch, Visa or MasterCard debit cards are accepted without further charge. Any lot purchased online within the-saleroom.com platform is subject to an additional charge for this service which shall equal 4.95% of the sale price plus VAT at the current rate.
  11. Buyers do not become owners of any lot(s) until the full purchase price plus any applicable premiums has been paid to the Auctioneer. Once the hammer falls, however, the Buyer is liable for any loss or damage to the lot(s) unless unsold in which case liability lies with the Vendor. In the absence of full payment, the Auctioneer retains the right to sell the lot(s) by way of public or private sale and any negative difference in price plus all applicable expenses shall be paid for by the original Buyer.
  12. The Auctioneer accepts absentee bidding. This is accepted on the understanding that clients or representative parties with whom the authority lies to leave a bid have inspected the lot(s) they wish to bid on and accept the condition of each lot and its authenticity. Should a client wish to leave a bid without having viewed the lot(s) they may do so on the understanding that any lots(s) purchased on their behalf will be paid for and removed on the authority of the Auctioneer. Should a buyer instruct an Auction Room porter to place a commission bid on their behalf, the Auctioneer shall not be held liable for any action or outcome following such a bid. Commission bids must be received by 4pm on the day before the sale and bids received after this shall not be actioned. We accept telephone bids for those lots which attract a lower estimate of at least £100. This service is offered free of charge but without responsibility or liability. Phone lines are limited and are available on a first-come first-served basis and a short while before your lot is due in the auction, we will call you. Any requests for telephone bids must be made by 4pm on the day before the sale. We cannot accommodate phone bid requests on the morning of the sale.
  13. Until full payment of the sale price of any lot(s) plus applicable premiums have been made, no lot(s) may be removed from the premises. Buyers should collect items paid for by the Friday following the sale day. Appointments must be made by all Buyers for the collection of paid for items. Once payment has been made, should a Buyer fail to remove their lot(s), a £5 storage charge shall incur per item per day. Once the hammer has fallen, all lots become the liability of the buyer and are to be removed from the premises following payment, with all faults, defects or errors of description. All Buyers are given the opportunity to inspect lots and are assumed to have done so to their satisfaction. Buyers must rely on their own skill and judgement when taking the decision to bid on any lot(s), including whether lots are fit for purpose and comply with catalogue descriptions or images. Any damage caused in any manner during the removal of purchases by the Buyer or anyone acting on their behalf is the responsibility of the Buyer and no damages may be sought from Donaldson & company. The Buyer is wholly responsible for ensuring the completeness and condition of lot(s) complies with their invoice and when the item was viewed.

  15. All auctions funds received by Donaldson & company Ltd are received into a TSB business account held by Donaldson & Company Ltd. Donaldson & company retain the right to any interest which may arise from funds held in this account.
  16. Prior to any delivery of goods to the premises of Donaldson & Company Ltd, and in accordance with the Auctioneer's due diligence responsibility, all prospective Vendors must register their full legal name, address, and VAT status with the Auctioneer. All consignments are offered in accordance with the Vendor Terms & Conditions outlined at the point of delivery or available on request.
  17. Any settlements will be settled by BACS bank transfer. Transfers will be sent within 14 days of the sale in which the Vendor submitted items to sell, unless lots are to be sold in subsequent sales, in which case the proceeds may be paid in one installment at the end of the sale of the entire consignment. Any lot marked sold where buyer then renegades on sale will be put through to the following sale and vendor will be notified. In cases where there is a reserve price on the lot, the Auctioneer reserves the right to bid on behalf of the seller to one bid below the reserve price.
  18. Lots are sold subject to the following fees: 18% of the sale price per lot sold at auction plus VAT plus 1.5% insurance waiver plus £3.00 lotting fee per lot. Should any lot(s) remain unsold at the end of a sale, Vendors will not be considered liable for any fee.

  20. The Auctioneer has taken reasonable measures to produce accurate catalogue descriptions and images of all lots available for sale. Catalogue contents are to be taken as opinion rather than fact. Buyers should satisfy themselves as to the condition of lots prior to bidding. Please note that description of artwork commencing only with the first name(s) and surname of the artist are considered the work of that artist by Donaldson & company. Items such as books and any set of multiple pieces is offered for sale without warranty regarding origin, authenticity or signature.
  21. No warranty of any kind is given with any lot sold by Auctioneer whether by private or public sale. Any existing warranties whether imposed by the Sale of Goods Act 1979 or otherwise (except in the case of the Vendor those implied under section 12 of the Sales of Goods Act 1979) are excluded. All lots are sold as seen and the responsibility lies with the Buyer to satisfy themselves with the condition of a lot prior to bidding.
  22. Lots are covered by insurance provided by Donaldson & company at the rate of 1.5% of the auction estimate made by the Auctioneer. Insurance covers loss and damage from the time at which the lot is delivered to the Auctioneer premises, to the fall of the hammer, whether the lot is sold or unsold. Any inherent structural weaknesses, damage by woodworm, moths, change in atmospheric conditions or gesso. Any intentional, wilful damage or breakages of any lots renders the person executing such damage or loss liable to pay compensation to the Auctioneer. In this case, the Auctioneer's assessment and subsequent decision is final.
  23. We are happy to offer Condition Reports though note that these are not to be considered warranties. Wherever possible, we can provide images on request via email for any item attracting a guide price of over £50. We are able to give an honest, professional opinion as to damage or restoration apparent on the item, but cannot give a guarantee as to its authenticity, nor can we advise as to any hidden restoration or concealed damage.
  24. Guide prices and reserves are to be considered solely the opinion of the Auctioneer and lots may realise a price that is below or above any given guide price.
  25. Any soft furnishing lots are required to carry Fire Safety labelling if the item has been produced after 1950. Any furniture made prior to 1950 is exempt, including if it has been upholstered since first fabrication. Furniture post 1950 may be sold as a work of art providing that it is not intended for use as furniture in a private dwelling or setting.
  26. Collector's electrical items are not PAT tested and power cables will be severed prior to auction. The Buyer is responsible for ensuring the safety of any purchased electrical item should they intend to use it post-auction. Donaldson & Company accept no responsibility as to its safety and advise that they are sold without warranty, safety testing or guarantee and for the intention of being on display only.
    In accordance with the General Product Safety Directive 1992 any non-collector's electrical item offered for sale must be safe for the use for which they are intended. Should the Auctioneer deem an item unsafe, it will be removed from the sale and/or catalogue and disposed of at Seller's expense
  27. Any motor vehicle offered or bought at auction comes with no warranty from the Auctioneer and is sold as seen. It is the responsibility of the Buyer to request and inspect all relevant paperwork.
  28. No liability is accepted by the Vendor or Auctioneer with regard to the current legal requirements of any lot. Lots may not comply with Statutory Requirements (health and safety act, for example) and Buyers must satisfy themselves as to the fitness for use of any items bought whether via public or private sale.
  29. In the instance that any lot which is a deliberate forgery and notice is given to this effect to the Auctioneer by the Buyer within 10 calendar days of a sale, and the lot(s) in question returned within 5 days of notification in the same condition as the day of sale, the Vendor is bound to refund the Buyer of any amount received by the Auctioneer in respect of the lot(s) in question. It is the responsibility of the Buyer to provide a burden of proof.
  30. Any royalties due under the Droit De Suite with regard to works of art produced by a living artist and where the hammer price exceeds 1,000 euros (UK equivalent) must be paid by the Buyer and any applicable amounts will appear on the Auctioneer's invoice. No funds applicable under this scheme will be retained by the Auctioneer, and no additional handling fees will be charged. For more information, please see: www.dacs.org.uk
  31. The Auctioneer retains the right to make reasonable changes or adjustments to agreements and conditions of sale. Such changes may be made at any time and without notice, and shall be made for legal, business or operational purposes. Any temporary relaxation of the conditions of sale does not mean we will not enforce conditions in the future.
  32. Donaldson & company Ltd work at all times to satisfy the requirements of both Vendor and Buyer. Should you wish to submit a complaint for any reason, please do so in writing.

These conditions are intended to be interpreted through the application of Scottish Law.

Donaldson & Company Auctioneers and Valuers Ltd reserves the right to amend these Conditions of Sale at any time and without prior written notice.
Amended October 2020

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