Conditions of Sale

Updated: January 2023

These Conditions of Sale and Cataloguing Practices set out the terms we offer the lots listed for sale.
By registering to bid and/or by bidding at auction, you agree to these terms; please be advised to read them carefully before bidding.



  • Unless otherwise indicated, Carlo Bonte Auctions acts as an agent for the seller.
  • Sales are conducted by auction according to Belgian law; any disputes will be adjudicated by Belgian law
  • A bailiff/notary supervises all LIVE Auctions; disputes during the sale can only be resolved by his/her decision. This decision is definite and irrevocable.
  • By registering for our auction, the buyer accepts the conditions of sale hereafter without any reserve.


In-house Buyer’s Premium: 27% (see chapter B5 for more details)



  1. Description of lots
    1. Certain words used in the catalogue have special meanings. You can find a detailed explanation in the section ‘Cataloguing Practices’
    2. The description, condition report and any other statement made by us (including artist, period, materials, dimensions, or provenance) are our opinion only and are not to be relied on as a statement of fact.
    3. All dimensions and weights are approximate only
    4. We do not provide any guarantee concerning the nature of a lot
    5. Estimates are made based on similar items’ conditions, quality, provenance, and previous auction results.
      The Estimate may not be relied on as a sole indicator or guarantee of the actual sale result or value for any purpose. Estimations do not include the buyer’s premium or any other applicable charges.
  2. Condition
    1. Goods are sold ‘as is’ at the moment of the adjudication. The condition of lots can vary due to age, previous damage, restorations, or general signs of use. This implies that lots offered will rarely be in perfect condition.
    2. Every bidder is expected to consult the condition report found on each lot on before bidding. Additional information (and/or pictures) need to be requested at least 48 hours before the first day of the auction. A missing condition report does not imply perfect condition.
    3. We carry out all condition reports with the utmost care; however, they are to be considered incomplete. Condition reports are to be seen as guidance only and are provided free of charge to help evaluate the condition of an item.
      All condition reports reflect our opinion only and can not be seen as a replacement for a personal inspection or a professional examination.
    4. Images and colours might slightly differ from the actual lot when printed or viewed on-screen.
  3. Viewing Days
    1. Every bidder is due to verify the condition of goods by personal inspection. We strongly recommend getting additional advice from a professional advisor.
    2. Viewing days are accessible free of charge by appointment. Our staff will provide every opportunity to examine the lots further as long as they do not suffer damage.
    3. Any damages caused by a visitor will be proceeded against him/her. In this event, the high Estimate price (or, if applicable, the reserve price) will serve as a reference for the compensation for the seller.



  1. New Bidders
    1. If you have not bid with Carlo Bonte Auctions before, you must register at least 48 hours before the first auction day to allow us enough time to process and approve your registration.
      The following documents will be needed:

      1. for individuals:
        picture identification (ID card, passport or driving licence) and, if not shown on the ID document, proof of your current address (e.g., utility bill or a bank statement)
      2. for businesses:
        your Certificate of Incorporation or similar documents that show the name, address, and VAT number of the company
    2. Depending on the items of your interest, we might ask for financial references and/or require a deposit as a condition of allowing you to participate in our auction. Any deposit paid will be charged against your invoice value; any eventual surplus will be refunded within 48h after the auction.
  2. Returning Bidders
    1. Depending on the items of your interest, we might ask for current identification documents, financial references and/or a deposit as a condition of allowing you to participate in our auction (as stated in chapter B1b above).
  3. In the event insufficient documentation is provided
    1. If, in our opinion, insufficient documentation is provided or any procedures including but not limited to anti-money-laundering checks are not meeting our expectations, we may refuse your registration to bid or cancel the contract for sale made between you and the seller.
  4. Bidding on behalf of another person
    1. If you are bidding on behalf of another person, that person will need to complete the registration procedure and supply a signed letter authorising you to bid in his/her place.
    2. In all other cases, liability to another person will not be accepted and must be carried by the bidder.
  5. Bidding Possibilities

    All bidding possibilities listed below are offered as a convenience to our clients, and Carlo Bonte Auctions can not be held liable for any errors (technical, human, or otherwise), omissions or breakdowns while providing these services.

    1. Online Bids through Carlo Bonte Live (27% Buyer’s Premium applies)
      1. Carlo Bonte Auctions allows bidding, either live during the auction or as a pre-bid/auto-bid ahead of the sale, to every client who successfully registered on (as described in chapter B1a/b).
      2. In the event of simultaneous floor/phone bids during the auction, the floor/phone bid will be prioritised.
    2. Telephone Bids (27% Buyer’s Premium applies)
      1. Bidding by telephone will only be accepted for lots with an estimated minimum of €1.500 and must be submitted to the auction house no later than 24h before the first auction day.
      2. All telephone bids will be recorded for up to 90 days.
      3. In the event of simultaneous floor bids during the auction, the floor bid will be prioritised.
    3. Written Bids (27% Buyer’s Premium applies)
      1. Written Bids are to be handed to the staff during the viewing days or sent to the auction house no later than 24h before the first auction day.
      2. In the event of identical written bids, the earliest bid received will be prioritised.
      3. In the event of identical floor/phone/online bids during the auction, the written bid will be prioritised.
    4. Online Bids through external Bidding Platforms (27-32% Buyer’s Premium applies)
      1. By bidding through external Bidding Platforms, the bidder agrees to pay the following internet surcharge fees in addition to the buyer’s premium:
        • Invaluable +5%
        • LiveAuctioneers +5%
        • TheSaleroom – Lot-tissimo – 51BidLive – EpaiLive +3%
        • Drouot +1,5%
      2. In the event of simultaneous bids, the opposing bid will be prioritised.



  1. Admission to the auction
    We reserve the right, at our option, to refuse admission to our premises, participation during the auction, or refuse any bid at any moment.
  2. Reserve Price
    1. Unless otherwise indicated, all lots are to be considered subject to a reserve price.
    2. The auctioneer may open the bidding below the reserve by placing a bid on behalf of the seller. The auctioneer may continue to place bids on behalf of the seller until the reserve price is met, either in consecutive order or in response to other bidders. These bids will not be identified as such and will in no case be placed above the reserve price.
  3. Auctioneer’s Discretion
    The auctioneer can, at his decision:

    1. Refuse any bid.
    2. Move bidding forwards or backwards in any way.
    3. Change the order, withdraw, split, or combine any lot.
    4. Reopen or continue the bidding even after the hammer has fallen.
    5. In case of dispute, in discussion with the court bailiff, cancel the sale of the lot or re-offer and resell any lot.
      Any claims must be transmitted within three business days after the auction and will be considered in good faith by the auctioneer and bailiff. A decision must be made and will be communicated no later than seven business days after the auction.
  4. Bidding
    The auctioneer will accept bids in the saleroom, by telephone or online. For more information about bidding possibilities, please consult chapter B5.
  5. Increments
    1. Bidding increments are usually about 10% of the current price but can be adapted by the auctioneer based on the situation.
    2. Bidding generally starts at 60-80% of the low Estimate at the auctioneer’s discretion.
    3. If no bid is made at this amount, the auctioneer may decide to lower the starting price and continue bidding.
    4. If there are no bids on a lot, it will be declared unsold.
  6. Currency
    The currencies Carlo Bonte Auction displays during the auction is to be considered as an indication only.
    We can not be held responsible for any information displayed on the screen, errors, omissions, or breakdown while displaying the current price in any way.
  7. Successful Bids
    Unless the auctioneer decides to use his/her discretion set out in chapter C3, the strike of the auction hammer is to be considered as the acceptance of the last bid made. At this moment, a contract of sale is made between the seller and the successful bidder.
    It is the bidder’s responsibility to find out if he/she was successful when bidding; please contact us by mail or telephone after the sale if you are unsure. All invoices are sent out by mail after the last auction day.
    Please make sure to check your spam folder if you suspect to have won a lot during the sale but have not received an invoice yet.
    As stated above, by bidding, you agree to comply with all (local) Belgian laws that are in force at the time of the auction and might apply to your current situation.



According to the international rules on copyright, the law obliges us to require an extra premium on the hammer price of original artworks made by a living artist or within seventy years after his/her decease.  This premium is not required on a hammer price lower than € 2.000. Starting from € 2.000, the amount is specified as follows:

  • 4% on the hammer price from € 0,01 up to € 50.000
  • 3% on the hammer price from € 50.000,01 up to € 200.000
  • 1% on the hammer price from € 200.000,01 up to € 350.000
  • 5% on the hammer price from € 350.000,01 up to € 500.000
  • 25% on the hammer price higher than € 500.000

The maximum amount of the extra premium should not exceed € 12.500.


  1. How to pay
    1. Immediately after the auction, the purchasing price for each lot is due, consisting of:
      1. Hammer price
      2. Buyer’s Premium
      3. [Internet Surcharges]
      4. [Artist’s Resale Rights]
      5. [other charges, fees, or taxes]
    1. The buyer is due to settle the payment within 10 business days after the last auction day. Sale and Invoice-number must be quoted for each payment.
    2. The payment must be made in one of the following ways:
      1. Wire Transfer
        All wire payments must be made to the following account:
        Name: Carlo Bonte Auctions NV
        Address: Kardinaal Mercierstraat 20, 8000 Bruges, Belgium
        Bank Name: BNP Paribas Fortis
        Bank Adress: Vlamingstraat 78, 8000 Bruges, Belgium
        IBAN: BE77 0017 8594 8842
      2. Credit Card
        We accept online payments with VISA/Mastercard.
        Unionpay cards can be used to pay in person at our offices.
        AMEX cards are not accepted.
      3. Cash
        Due to money laundering laws, we can accept up to €3.000 per buyer per auction. Official identification is required for all cash payments.
  1. Transfer of Ownership
    1. The buyer does not possess ownership of the lot until we have received full payment of the total invoice amount. Partial payments do not qualify you to collect single lots.
    2. The responsibility of the lot will transfer to you whichever of the following applies first:
      1. When you collect the lot
      2. 30 calendar days after the auction when the lot is moved to paid storage (unless we have agreed otherwise in writing)
    3. Late Payments
      Invoices that remain unpaid or partly paid will occur the following fees on day 31:

      1. Administration Fee of €30
      2. Late Payment Fee of 1.5% of the total invoice amount
        every 14 calendar days: additional late payment fee of 1.5% of the total invoice amount
    4. Non-Payments
      If a buyer fails to make the full payment by the due date, Carlo Bonte Auctions will be entitled to take one or more of the following steps:

      1. Cancel the sale of the lot. In this case, we may decide the resell the lot. The non-paying bidder will still be held responsible for any negative difference in the realised price or any other financial damages caused. He/she has no right to claim a possible positive difference on the realised price.
      2. Hold you legally responsible and may begin legal proceedings to recover all losses caused.
      3. Take the owed amount from other sources that Carlo Bonte Auctions may owe you (deposits, settlements, etc.).
      4. Reveal your identity and contact details to the seller.
      5. Reject all future participation and bids made by you or on behalf of you.
      6. Take any other actions we see appropriate.


  1. Collection
    1. The collection of goods is possible after the last auction day during our opening hours by appointment on the condition that the full payment has been made.
    2. All lots must be collected no later than 30 days after the auction day. After this period, all uncollected goods will be put in paid storage at the cost of the buyer.
  2. Storage
    1. Once items have been placed in storage, a fixed storage fee of €10 per lot per week will be charged.
    2. Unless agreed upon otherwise in writing, if the item(s) have not been collected 6 months after the auction, we may decide to sell the items and pay you the proceeds after subtracting all owed storage fees.
  3. Shipping
    1. The buyer must make all transport and shipping arrangements.
      To assist you, we have provided a list of options on our website:
    2. We are not responsible for any third party and their actions, failure to act or neglect during transport of lots.
    3. A written authorisation needs to be provided to the auction house if a 3rd party is collecting lots on behalf of the buyer.
  4. Export from the European Union – VAT Refund
    For a VAT refund outside of the European Union, the following documents must be provided no later than the 10th day of the month following the delivery:

    1. Official customs declaration stating name and address of the buyer, description of the lots and the full invoice value.
    2. A valid bank account registered on the same name as stated on the invoice. Refunds to credit cards are only possible within 30 days after the purchase when the invoice was paid through our online payment system. In-store card payments can not be refunded.
  5. Intra-Community Delivery
    For a VAT refund in the context of an Intra-Community Delivery, the following procedure applies (according to Belgian ‘Btw-wetboek artikel 39bis’):

    1. The payment needs to be made in full to us.
    2. The following documents have to be provided no later than the 10th day of the month following the delivery:
      Either: two non-contradictory documents of category 1 (see below) that have been issued by two parties that are independent of each other, being either the transporter or the receiver.
      Or: one non-contradictory document of category 1 and one non-contradictory document of category 2 (see below) that vouch for the transport and have been issued by two parties that are independent of each other, being either the seller or the receiver.
    3. We will refund the applicable VAT to the bank account or credit card used for the purchase.

Category 1:

  • A signed CMR document or a signed CMR freight letter
  • A bill of lading (B/L or BOL)
  • An invoice issued by the transporter of the goods

Category 2:

  • An insurance document of the transport or bank documents that proof the transport of the goods
  • Official documents issued by a public instance, e.g., by a notary that vouches for the receipt of the goods in the country of the receiver
  • A receipt by an authorised warehouse keeper in the country of the receiver that proves the storage of the goods in that country


Export to a non-EU country of processed ivory or of objects containing ivory is only possible for:
– Musical instruments dating before 1975, provided that a permit has been issued by the CITES offices.
– Objects, culturally, historically, or artistically important, dating before 1947, sold to an official museum, providing that a permit has been issued by the CITES offices.

Directoraat-generaal Leefmilieu

Afdeling Multilaterale en Strategische Zaken Cel C.I.T.E.S.

Eurostation II – 2de verdieping

Victor Hortaplein 40 bus 10 – 1060 Brussel

Tel: +32 (0)2 524.74.26 – E-Mail: [email protected]

The auction house cannot be held responsible in the event of a negative decision by the authorities as above.





(+): a relevant item has been added to the lot, in most cases a certificate.

Please note that we use the following standards in connection with dating items:

  • Marked … and period =
    The item appears to be, in our opinion, genuine and made during the reign of the emperor indicated by the mark.
  • Marked … =
    The item appears to be, in our opinion, old and could be produced during the reign of the emperor indicated by the mark.
  • With a … mark =
    The item is bearing a mark, but can not be assumed to be of the period indicated by the mark