The URDG758 (Uniform Rules for Demand Guarantees) are a set of contractual rules that apply to demand guarantees and counter-guarantees. As the URDG are contractual by nature, they apply only if the parties to a demand guarantee or counter-guarantee so choose.
In simple terms, URDG offers a set of guidelines for the issue of Demand Guarantees which include Bank Guarantees in the way in which they are worded and constructed.
These have recently been revised and are now clearer and more precise than their predecessor, URDG 458. The present revision (URDG 758) uses language consistent with that in the ICC’s universally accepted Uniform Customs and Practice for Documentary Credits (UCP 600).
These call for new definitions and interpretation rules to provide greater clarity and precision. A clear layout of the examination of the demand process and a roadmap to handling extend or pay demands for force majeure.
Benefits with using URDG 758
Once the URDG are incorporated in the guarantee or counter-guarantee text by contractual reference to the URDG, they are deemed to be entirely incorporated, unless specific article(s) are expressly excluded or amended.
When drafting a URDG guarantee or counter-guarantee, it is important to make a choice and avoid conditions whose occurrence can only be determined through a forensic examination of the underlying transactions. Guarantors and applicants should avoid using ambiguous terms in the guarantee. Sound practice can only be built upon transparency and good faith. It is in no one’s interest that the guarantee terms could only be understood through lengthy and costly litigation. Clear wording requires no judicial interpretation; therefore applicants can save considerable negotiating time and the cost of specialized legal assistance by benefiting from ready-to-use standard conditions in the model guarantee forms.
A URDG guarantee and counter-guarantee are irrevocable undertakings; this protects the beneficiary against the risk of revocation of the guarantee at a time when the guaranteed obligation is still to be completed.
A URDG guarantee and counter-guarantee enter into effect as from the date they are issued, unless their terms expressly postpone their entry into effect to agree with a later date or the occurrence of an agreed event. Accordingly, no demand for payment can be presented until the guarantee enters into effect following the occurrence of a specified date or event indicated in the guarantee.
The essential characteristic of a demand guarantee is that it is independent of the underlying transaction between the applicant and the beneficiary that prompted the issuance of the guarantee. Further, a demand guarantee is also independent of the instruction relationship pursuant to the applicant having requested the guarantor to issue the guarantee in favor of the beneficiary.