Terms and conditions



  1. Unless announced otherwise by the auctioneer, all bids are per lot, as numbered in the printed Catalogue. H.R. Harmer, as agent for the consignor or vendor, shall regulate the bidding and shall determine the manner in which the bidding shall be conducted. Harmer reserves the right to withdraw any lot prior to sale (without liability to any potential purchaser or agent), to re-offer any withdrawn lot, to divide a lot or to group two or more lots belonging to the same consignor or vendor, and to refuse any bid believed not made in good faith.
  2. The highest bid acknowledged by the auctioneer shall prevail. Should a dispute arise between bidders (including a dispute between a floor bidder and the auctioneer acting on behalf of a mail bidder, consignor or vendor), the auctioneer alone shall determine who is the successful bidder and whether to re-offer the lot in dispute. Should a dispute arise after the sale, the auctioneer’s sale records shall be conclusive. On all lots sold, a commission of 18% on the hammer price is payable by the buyer.
  3. Terms of bidding:
    1. The auctioneer reserves the right to bid on behalf of clients (and consignors or vendors) but shall not be liable for errors and omissions in executing instructions to bid, however received, and whether such errors or omissions be those of the bidder or agent or those of the auctioneer.
    2. All lots are offered subject to a reserve price. The auctioneer may implement such reserve price.
    3. It may also be assumed that all consignors have been advanced monies against the sale of their stamps and H.R. Harmer therefore has a security interest over and above the normal auction commission. 
    4. Agents are responsible for all purchases made on behalf of their clients, unless other arrangements have been confirmed in writing prior to the auction.
    5. H.R. Harmer further reserves the right to ban any bidder from participation in its’ sales for any reason deemed appropriate in its’ sole discretion. 
    6. H.R. Harmer retains the right to demand a cash deposit from anyone prior to bidder registration and/or to demand payment at the time the lot is Hammered down to the highest bidder, for any reason whatsoever. In the event that any buyer refuses or fails to make payment in cash for any lot at the time it is knocked down to him, the auctioneer reserves the right to re-offer the lot for sale to the highest bidder.


  1. Terms of Payment:
    1. Subject to any extension of credit (which shall be made in accordance with H.R. Harmer’s credit policies and requested prior to the commencement of the auction), payment for lots shall be as follows:
      1. Floor Bidders. All floor bidders must register prior to the beginning of sale. All invoices to Floor Bidders shall be due on the day of the auction.
      2. Mail Bidders. A successful mail bidder will be notified of lots purchased. Payment is due within ten (10) business days of auction. Mailed delivery will be to the address on the bid sheet and proof by H.R. Harmer of receipt of a sending at the advised address shall constitute delivery. All charges for handling and delivery shall be added to your invoice. All shipments sent by H.R. Harmer are fully insured against loss in transit unless otherwise requested.
      3. Where an opinion of a generally recognized authority is desired, payment is still due within ten (10) business days of auction. We will hold the funds while we send the items to the recognized authorities.
    2. Payment is accepted in the form of
      1. Check in U.S. dollars drawn on a U.S. bank. If payment is made by check, Harmer’s reserves the right to hold shipment/delivery for up to ten (10) business days while it clears.
      2. By wire transfer. H.R. Harmer will credit your account with the actual USD s credited to our account net of any fees.
      3. By credit card (MasterCard, Discover or Visa). Payment by credit card is accepted as payment but will be subject to a 3% Convenience fee. This fee will be added to the total of the invoice including hammer price, buyer’s premium, shipping and other applicable taxes and fees.


  1. Title and Default Terms:
    1. Subject to the fulfillment of all of the conditions set forth herein, on the fall of the auctioneer’s hammer, title to the offered lot will pass to the highest bidder acknowledged by the auctioneer, and such bidder thereupon (a) assumes full risk and responsibility therefore, and (b) will pay the purchase price as set forth in Conditions of Sale 4.
    2. In addition to other remedies available to us by law, we reserve the right to impose from the date of sale a late charge of 2% per month if payment is not made in accordance with the conditions set forth herein. Unless otherwise agreed by H.R. Harmer, all property must be removed from our premises by the purchaser at his expense not later than 10 business days following its sale.
    3. If any applicable conditions herein are not complied with by the purchaser, the purchaser will be in default and in addition to any and all other remedies available to us and the Consignor by law, including, without limitation, the right to hold the purchaser liable for the total purchase price, including all fees, charges and expenses more fully set forth herein, we, at our option, may (x) cancel the sale of that, or any other lot or lots sold to the defaulting purchaser at the same or any other auction, retaining as liquidated damages all payments made by the purchaser, or (y) resell the purchased property, whether at public auction or by private sale, or (z) effect any combination thereof. In any case, the purchaser will be liable for any deficiency, any and all costs, handling charges, late charges, expenses of both sales, our commissions on both sales at our regular rates, legal fees and expenses, collection fees and incidental damages. We may, in our sole discretion, apply any proceeds of sale then due or thereafter becoming due to the purchaser from us or any affiliated company, or any payment made by the purchaser to us or any affiliated company, whether or not intended to reduce the purchaser’s obligations with respect to the unpaid lot or lots, to the deficiency and any other amounts due to us or any affiliated companies. In addition, a defaulting purchaser will be deemed to have granted and assigned to us and our affiliated companies, a continuing security interest of first priority in any property or money of or owing to such purchaser in our possession or in the possession of any of our affiliated companies, and we may retain and apply such property or money as collateral security for the obligations due to us or to any affiliated company of ours. We shall have all of the rights accorded a secured party under the New York Uniform Commercial Code (UCC ).
    4. Payment will not be deemed to have been made in full until we have collected good funds. Any claims relating to any purchase, including any claims under the Conditions of Sale, must be presented directly to Harmer. In the event the purchaser fails to pay any or all of the total purchase price for any lot and Harmer nonetheless elects to pay the Consignor any portion of the sale proceeds, the purchaser acknowledges that H.R. Harmer shall have all of the rights of the Consignor to pursue the purchaser for any amounts paid to the Consignor, whether at law, in equity, or under these Conditions of Sale.


  1. Exhibition and Inspection of Lots:
    1. On Premises Inspection and Postal Viewing. Ample opportunity is given for on premises inspection prior to the auction date, and, upon written request and at H.R. Harmer's discretion, for inspection by postal viewing (all as detailed elsewhere in this Catalogue).
    2. Each lot is sold as genuine and correctly described, based on individual description as modified by any specific notations in this Catalogue, including but not restricted to the section entitled “Key to Cataloguing”.
    3. Quality. Any lot which a purchaser considers to be incorrectly described may be returned to H.R. Harmer within two weeks of its receipt by such purchaser (“Returning Purchaser”), provided, however, that the same is received by H.R. Harmer within four weeks of the date of the auction; however, H.R. Harmer may, in its discretion, refuse acceptance of such returned lot. If an opinion of a generally recognized authority is desired, the period of time within which a lot must be received by H.R. Harmer will be extended in accordance with Condition of Sale 8. In the event that a dispute cannot be resolved by reference to a generally recognized authority, and H.R. Harmer thereupon undertakes to re-offer the lot with a description identical to the description disputed, the Returning Purchaser shall be liable for the deficiency, if any, between the proceeds of the sale to the Returning Purchaser and the proceeds of a sale to a subsequent purchaser, as well as for all costs and expenses of the re-sale, including commission, and all incidental damages. Any lot, the description of which is disputed, must be returned intact in the condition received by the purchaser. The following lots are not returnable except at the discretion of H.R. Harmer:
      1. Lots from purchasers who attended the exhibition of the lots; 
      2. Lots examined by postal viewers; 
      3. Lots on account of their appearance, if they are illustrated in this Catalogue;
      4. Lots described as having repairs, defects or faults—for any reason;
      5. U.S. stamps (through 1918) for reasons of paper inclusions;
      6. No encapsulated stamps unless originally offered in this condition;
      7. Multiple stamp/item lots including sets of 15 or more stamps, collections, large lots and group lots, whether certified or not, are sold “As Is” and are not returnable for any reason.
    4. Authenticity. Any lot which is declared otherwise than genuine by a generally recognized authority is returnable, provided such lot is received by H.R. Harmer within four weeks of the date of the auction. Proof that a generally recognized authority declines to express an opinion is normally grounds for the return of a lot.
    5. Expenses incurred in the submission and the return of a lot under Conditions of Sale 7-9 are not refunded.


  1. All lots to be sent out on extension must be paid in advance and submitted by H.R. Harmer.
    1. If a lot is certified by a generally recognized authority to be other than as described:
      1. The sale (and the invoice with respect thereto, if outstanding) will be cancelled;
      2. To the extent set forth in Condition of Sale 9, payment of the expense of certification will be made to the purchaser;
      3. In the event any item “not as described,” the buyer will be refunded the purchase price and certification fee up to $500 unless otherwise agreed.
    2. Any lot with a PF or PSE certificate issued in the last six years is not eligible for extension.


  1. Expenses of certification shall be borne by the purchaser except where a lot is certified other than as described and is returned to H.R. Harmer in accordance with Condition of Sale 8.


  1. All lots sold are subject to any applicable sales tax (or customs duty for non-U.S. buyers) unless a valid resale permit is presented.


  1. Lots will be shipped by Federal Express (street addresses) or by USPS Express Mail (PO boxes) with a minimum fee of US$50 per shipment. If you wish to have your purchases delivered by another method, you must make your request in writing before the sale. You will need to prepay your invoice in full and guarantee that once the package is accepted by the postal service or other courier that HR Harmer, GPN Inc. is not liable for any loss or damage to the package, and that should any loss or damage take place, HR Harmer, GPN Inc. is not obligated to make refund or restitution.


  1. Jurisdiction, Venue, Choice of Law:
    1. Dispute resolution shall occur in New York County, New York, USA. The provisions of the Conditions of Sale will be construed and disputes determined by application of New York Law.
    2. Notice, Service of Process: Buyers agree to accept all notices and service of process relating to dispute resolution at the address provided by Buyer on any registration forms required to be executed as a condition of bidding in our auction.
    3. Dispute Resolution: All disputes and claims arising out of or relating to events and actions covered herein, brought by or against us, shall be resolved by mediation or binding arbitration in accord with the procedures set forth below. This provision does not apply to claims brought by the Buyer directly against the Consignor, including, but not limited to any action brought pursuant to the rescission provisions noted above.


  1. Mediation and Arbitration Procedures:
    1. Within 30 days of written notice that there is a dispute, the parties or their representatives may meet at a time and place mutually agreed upon, to mediate their differences. If the parties agree, a mediator acceptable to the parties shall be selected. The mediator shall be an attorney, trained in mediation techniques and familiar with commercial law and the UCC. The mediator’s fees shall be shared equally and paid by all parties. At the mediation, all parties shall have actual authority to settle the dispute. Any statements made during, and all aspects of, the mediation process shall be kept confidential and shall not be admissible in any subsequent arbitration or judicial proceeding. Any resolution shall be confidential.
    2. If the parties cannot agree to mediation, or if mediation does not resolve the dispute, or in any event no longer than 60 days after receipt of written notice referred to above, the parties shall submit the dispute for binding arbitration before a single neutral arbitrator jointly selected, or absent agreement, selected from the panel of Arbitrators provided by the American Arbitration Association (AAA). If, within 15 days, the parties cannot agree on an arbitrator, then AAA shall select one (1) person as arbitrator in accord with AAA rules. The arbitrator shall be an attorney, experienced in commercial law and with the UCC. The arbitrator shall be required to follow the law in making his award, and the award shall be in writing and shall set forth findings of fact and legal conclusions.
    3. The arbitration shall occur within 60 days of the selection of the arbitrator, in New York County, New York, unless the parties agree to another location. Discovery and the procedure for the Arbitration shall, unless otherwise agreed to by the parties, follow the procedures and policies of AAA governing commercial arbitration, subject however to the following modifications.
      1. All arbitration proceedings shall be confidential. None of the parties nor the arbitrator may disclose the existence, content or results of the arbitration without the written consent of all parties.
      2. The parties shall attempt to agree on the issues to be arbitrated, or identify the disputed issues in writing no later than 45 days prior to arbitration.
      3. Unless otherwise agreed by the parties, discovery, if any, shall be limited as follows:
        1. Requests for no more than 10 clearly identified categories of documents, to be provided to the requesting party within 14 days of written request therefore;
        2. Depositions: No more than two (2) per party, provided however, the deposition(s) are to be completed within one (1) day;
        3. Compliance with the above shall be enforced by the arbitrator in accord with New York law.
  1. Each party shall have no longer than eight (8) hours to present its position. The entire hearing before the arbitrator shall not take longer than three (3) consecutive days, unless all parties agree otherwise in writing. (d) The award shall be made in writing no more than 30 days following the end of the proceeding. Judgment upon the award rendered by the arbitrator may be entered by any court having jurisdiction thereof. Each party shall bear its own attorney’s fees and costs in connection with the proceedings and shall share equally the fees and expenses of the arbitrator.