China: 工程款优先受偿权新进展

Last Updated: 29 April 2019
Article by Hanbo Shi
Most Read Contributor in China, July 2019

一、优先受偿权主要解决哪些问题

结合司法实务和新司法解释的规定,本文拟讨论如下几个问题:

第一、主体问题,即回答什么人可以主张优先受偿权?主要争议问题在于实际施工人是否有权主张优先受偿权。

第二、客体问题,即回答优先受偿权的范围问题?包括三个方面,1、什么工程款可以享受优先权?主要解决装饰装修问题。2、工程款的那些部分可以优先受偿?主要解决利润和违约损失问题。3、优先受偿权及于哪些部分?主要解决是否及于土地,以及工程在他人名下时如何处理的问题。

第三、优先受偿权的行使期限问题。

第四、合同无效、合同解除对优先受偿权的影响问题。

第五、工程款债权转让、工程转让对优先受偿权的影响。

第六、优先受偿权的约定放弃问题。

下面本文开始一一介绍。

二、主体——谁可以主张优先受偿权

(一)与发包人订立合同的承包人才能主张优先权

《最高人民法院关于审理建设工程施工合同纠纷案件适用法律问题的解释(二)》(以下简称"《解释二》")第17条规定:与发包人订立建设工程施工合同的承包人,根据 合同法第二百八十六条规定请求其承建工程的价款就工程折价或者拍卖的价款优先受偿的,人民法院应予支持。

本条规定的要点在于,与发包人订立合同的承包人,才有权主张优先受偿权。这样实际施工人便被排除在外。实际施工人主要包括以下三类人:非转包的承包人、违法分包的承包人以及挂靠人,上述三类人无权主张优先受偿权。同时应当注意,与总承包人签订分别合同的合法分包人(包括专业分包人和劳务分包人),由于与发包人没有直接的合同关系,也无权主张优先权。

读者要特别注意,这一点是《解释二》重要的新变化。此前的理论和司法实务均认可实际施工人主张优先权。例如比较权威的《民事审判指导与参考》的第65辑上有观点认为:"......应允许分包人或者实际施工人就其承建的工程部分在发包人欠付的工程款范围内向发包人主张工程价款优先受偿权。"

但新规定生效后,认为实际施工人可以主张优先权的规定不应再适用。对此《最高人民法院建设工程施工合同司法解释(二)理解与适用》(以下简称"《理解与适用》")一书特别给出了提示:"地方各级人民法院有关实际施工人享有工程价款优先受偿权问题的意见,凡与本解释相悖的,应当立即自动停止"。

(二)利用代位权解决优先权的问题

实际施工人不能直接向发包人主张优先权,为了救济自己的权利,可以利用代位权。即代位承包人向发包人主张工程款,同时主张优先权。

关于实际施工人的代位,《解释二》给出了一个规定。《解释二》第25条规定:实际施工人根据合同法第七十三条规定,以转包人或者违法分包人怠于向发包人行使到期债权,对其造成损害为由,提起代位权诉讼的,人民法院应予支持。

同时注意,合法的分包人当然同样也可以主张代位权,这个是没有疑问的。

(三)关于挂靠的一点思考

根据《理解与适用》的解读,挂靠人作为实际施工人,不能主张优先权。但如果发包人明知挂靠人的挂靠,法律关系好像就有点不一样了。笔者认为,在发包人明知挂靠的情况下,施工合同是成立在发包人和挂靠人之间,被挂靠人仅仅是借名,并不是真正的合同主体。此时挂靠人才是"与发包人订立建设工程施工合同的承包人",应当允许挂靠人行使优先受偿权。

三、客体——优先受偿权的范围

(一)什么工程款可以享受优先权?

根据理论和实务的通说,建设工程勘察、设计、监理合同,不适用优先权,装饰装修合同适用优先权,但有一定的限制条件。

最高法院2004年曾有复函认为:装饰装修工程属于建设工程,可以适用《合同法》第286条关于优先受偿权的规定,但装饰装修工程的发包人不是该建筑物的所有权人或者承包人与该建筑物所有权人之间没有合同关系的除外。享有优先权的承包人只能在建筑物因装饰而增加价值的范围内优先受偿。

对于上述观点,《解释二》给予了确认,《解释二》第18条规定:装饰装修工程的承包人,请求装饰装修工程价款就该装饰装修工程折价或者拍卖的价款优先受偿的,人民法院应予支持,但装饰装修工程的发包人不是该建筑物的所有权人的除外。

条文中"就该装饰装修工程折价或者拍卖的价款"的含义,就是"装饰装修工程价款的优先受偿权仅限于因装饰装修而使该建筑物增加的价值的范围之内"。2004年复函中,"装饰装修工程的发包人不是该建筑物的所有权人"和"承包人与该建筑物所有权人之间没有合同关系"两个表述有嫌重复,《解释二》的条文进行了精简。

不过应当注意,因为装饰装修工程与建筑物不可分割,行使对装饰装修工程的优先权时,要拍卖建筑物,对于拍得价款中,有多少是对应于"因装饰装修而增值"的部分,在实务中是不太容易确定的。

(二)工程款的那些部分可以优先受偿?

根据目前的规定,工程款大致由四部分构成,即直接费、间接费、利润和税金。《最高人民法院关于建设工程价款优先受偿权问题的批复》(以下简称"《优先权批复》")第3条规定:建筑工程价款包括承包人为建设工程应当支付的工作人员报酬、材料款等实际支出的费用,不包括承包人因发包人违约所造成的损失。

根据《优先权批复》的规定,似乎只有直接费可以主张优先权,而违约损失则明确的不能主张优先权。但对于工程款中的间接费、利润、税金则不置可否。

后来的司法实务也并未完全遵循上述规定,起码近年来的司法实务中,并不对工程款的组成部分进行细致的区分,认为工程款可以一体化的主张优先受偿权,即直接费、间接费、利润、税金等均可主张优先权。

例如《民事审判指导与参考》第38辑有观点认为:"......综上,享有优先权保护的建筑工程价款的范围可以界定为,如指已竣工工程,应指竣工结算价,未竣工工程则应以施工预算价为基础进行评估确定工程价款;包含承包人的正常利润,也包括承包人的垫资款,但不包括承包人因发包人违约造成的损失"。

对于这个问题,《解释二》对司法实务的做法给予的确认。《解释二》第21条规定:承包人建设工程价款优先受偿的范围依照国务院有关行政主管部门关于建设工程价款范围的规定确定。承包人就逾期支付建设工程价款的利息、违约金、损害赔偿金等主张优先受偿的,人民法院不予支持。

《解释二》条文中使用"国务院有关行政主管部门关于建设工程价款范围的规定"这个表述,是为了防止关于工程款包括直接费、间接费、利润和税金的规定会修改,尽可能确保司法解释的通用性和稳定性。

(三)优先受偿权及于那些部分?

1. 优先受偿权不及于土地使用权

优先受偿权仅限于建设工程,不及于建设工程所在的土地使用权,这一观点是实务中的通说。例如《民事审判指导与参考》第44辑有观点认为:"......该条规定的建设工程价款优先受偿权不及于建筑物所占用的建设用地使用权部分。在将建筑物价值变现时,尽管根据"房地一体处分"原则要将建筑物和建设用地使用权一起进行处分,但是在一起处分时,要区分开建筑物的价值和建设用地使用权的价值,建设工程价款优先权仅仅对建筑物的价值部分有优先受偿的效力"。

2. 建设工程不在发包人名下时的处理

优先受偿权不及于土地虽然争议不大,但实务中,若土地使用权和建设工程不在发包人名下,而在其他人名下时,承包人是否还可以主张优先受偿权,争议就比较大了。《解释二》对于这个问题也没有明确规定。

对于这个问题,可以举一个实践中较为常见例子:甲乙合作开发房地产,土地及建设手续在甲名下,由乙作为发包人与总承包人并签订建设工程合同。乙欠丙工程款,丙是否可以就甲名下的工程主张优先权?丙可否向甲主张工程款?

笔者认为,丙可就甲名下的工程主张优先受偿权,但丙不可以向甲主张工程款。理由为:工程价款优先受偿权作为一种法定优先权,依附于建筑物,对建筑物具有追及效力。即不论建筑物建设在谁的名下,也不论建筑物建成后转移到谁的名下,承包人均能追及建筑物行使优先权(这一点与抵押权的追及效力原理相同)。因此,虽然建筑物在甲的名下,但丙可以就建筑物行使优先权。但由于丙与甲没有合同关系,根据合同相对性原理,丙不能向甲主张工程款。

《民事审判指导与参考》也曾刊登过一个采用同样观点的案例,在第49辑中有一则案例认为:"作为建筑所有人的建设单位将建设项目全权委托给房地产开发公司施工,同时签订《三方协议》,该协议系当事人真实意思的表示,不违反国家法律及法规的强制性规定,应认定为有效。建设单位对房地产开发公司应付工程款项不应承担连带责任。但是如果房地产开发公司不能按照约定支付工程价款,建设公司可依照合同法第286条规定,向建筑物所有人主张优先受偿权,并可通过对建筑工程的拍卖及折价等方式实现其权利"。

四、优先受偿权的行使期限

对于优先权的行使期限,《优先权批复》给出了明确的规定。《优先权批复》第4条规定:建设工程承包人行使优先权的期限为六个月,自建设工程竣工之日或者建设工程合同约定的竣工之日起计算。

实务中一致认为,上述规定存在问题。因为可以请求支付工程款的时间,往往比竣工时间或约定的竣工时间要晚。可能出现工程款还不到支付时间,优先权已经过期的情况(比如约定竣工后的结算时间长于6个月的)。从理论上讲,工程款优先权的起算点,应与工程款应当支付的时间点相同。

认识到上述问题,司法实务中对工程款优先受偿权的起算点,并未严格按照上面的批复办理,大都采用变通的办法,合理靠拢到工程款"应当给付"之日。

例如对于实践中争议最大的,工程干到中途停工的,优先权何时起算的问题,实务中根据不同的案情,给出了较为合理的答案。

《全国民事审判工作会议纪要》(2011)认为:"......如果建设工程合同由于发包人的原因解除或终止履行,承包人行使建设工程价款优先受偿权的期限自合同解除或终止履行之日起计算。"

最高法院(2014)民申字第1004号认为:"......且案涉工程确因泰乐公司拖欠工程款等原因,导致中建八局停工并最终退出施工。鉴于双方对中建八局已完工程造价一直未能达成一致的结算意见,如工程款数额尚未确定时即已认定施工人超过主张优先权的行使期限,显然与优先保障施工人基本利益即工程款这一立法目相悖,二审判决从中建八局起诉之日起计算行使优先权的期限,认定其对案涉工程享有优先受偿权,并无不当。"

综合上述纪要和案例,可以认为采用合同解除说是比较合理的,如果承包人起诉之前没有解除合同,直接起诉解除合同的,那么起诉之时开始计算优先权起算点,这样优先权不会轻易过期,有利于保护承包人的工程款利益,间接保护建筑工人利益。

对于上述问题,《解释二》给出了较为合理的规定。《解释二》第22条规定:承包人行使建设工程价款优先受偿权的期限为六个月,自发包人应当给付建设工程价款之日起算。

新规定改为"自发包人应当给付建设工程价款之日起算",符合法理,也符合实务中的通常做法。至于什么时间是"应当给付",之前的判例还是有参考价值的。

五、合同无效、合同解除对优先受偿权的影响

(一)合同无效不影响优先权的行使

目前实务中的通说认为,合同无效不影响优先权的行使。例如《民事审判指导与参考》第63辑有观点认为:"......笔者认为,建筑工程施工合同无效,不应影响优先受偿权的行使"。实践中判案也普遍采纳这个观点。

对此,《解释二》也给予了确认。《解释二》第19条规定:建设工程质量合格,承包人请求其承建工程的价款就工程折价或者拍卖的价款优先受偿的,人民法院应予支持。

质量合格是当然的要求(质量不合格不能主张工程款,更何况优先权)。但从条文字面上好像看不到"合同无效不影响优先权"的意思。《理解与适用》将本条引申,指出本条含有"合同有效并非承包人行使工程价款优先受偿权的条件"的含义。

(二)合同解除不影响优先权的行使

合同解除不影响优先权的行使,这也是实务中的通说。例如《民事审判指导与参考》第55辑有案例认为:"虽然涉案建设工程合同已经解除,但省五建的劳动与建筑材料已经物化于涉案工程中,因此,一审认定省五建对于涉案工程中其施工的部分享有优先受偿权,并无不当"。即合同解除后,承包人仍然享有优先受偿权。

对此,《解释二》也给出了明确规定。《解释二》第20条规定:未竣工的建设工程质量合格,承包人请求其承建工程的价款就其承建工程部分折价或者拍卖的价款优先受偿的,人民法院应予支持。

同时应当注意,承包人享有优先权的是其承建的部分。行使优先权处置建筑物时,也是整体处置,然后就处置价款中,其承建部分所占的比例优先受偿。但如果是烂尾楼,也可能不存在续建。

另外,优先受偿权的起算点一般为合同解除时,如果起诉解除合同的,则为起诉时。(详见上文)

六、工程款债权转让、工程转让对优先受偿权的影响

(一)工程款债权转让、工程转让的,均不影响优先受偿权的行使。

例如《民事审判指导与参考》第65辑有观点认为:"建设工程债权转让后,受让人也应享有优先受偿权。建设工程承包人转让其在施工中形成的债权,受让人基于债权的转让而取得工程款债权,因而其应当享有该工程款的优先受偿权。法定优先权属于担保物权,具有一定的追及效力,其功能是担保工程款的优先支付,该权利依附于所担保的工程而存在,及时被担保的工程发生转让,也不影响承包人优先受偿权的行使。"

工程款债权转让不影响优先权,在实务中争议不大。但工程转让是否影响优先权的行使,存在很大的争议,但大多数观点认为不影响优先权。工程转让不影响优先权的行使,也是基于优先权的追及效力,类似于抵押权的追及效力。

例如最高法院(2011)民申字第1766号一案认为:"需要指出的是,二审判决作出"建设工程价款的优先受偿权只能在建设工程仍归属于发包人时予以行使,这应该是建筑工程价款优先受偿权行使的必备条件"的论述不妥,因为建筑工程价款优先受偿权是物权,具有追及性,是针对建设工程的。"

七、优先受偿权的约定放弃

《解释二》第23条规定:发包人与承包人约定放弃或者限制建设工程价款优先受偿权,损害建筑工人利益,发包人根据该约定主张承包人不享有建设工程价款优先受偿权的,人民法院不予支持。

对于优先权可以约定放弃,在实务中争议不大。例如最高法院(2016)最高法民终532号一案认为:"......建设工程优先受偿权是法律赋予建设工程施工人的法定权利,属于具有担保性质的民事财产权利。作为民事财产权利,权利人当然可以自由选择是否行使,当然也应当允许其通过约定放弃。而且,放弃优先受偿权并不必然侵害建设工程承包人或建筑工人的合法权益,承包人或建筑工人的合法权益还可通过其他途径的保障予以实现。"

但对于不能损害建筑工人利益,如何理解呢?《理解与适用》一书认为:"如果承包人与发包人约定放弃或者限制建设工程价款优先受偿权,导致其债权不能实现,进而造成其资产负债状况恶化,以至于不能支付建筑工人工资......",就可以认为损害了建筑工人利益。

因此,《理解与适用》一书认为,"在判断承包人放弃或者限制建设工程价款优先受偿权是否损害建筑工人的利益时,要看承包人这一行为是否影响其整体清偿能力,要将承包人整体的资产负债情况以及现金流情况是否因此恶化到影响建筑工人工资支付的程度作为主要的考虑因素"。

同时考虑到本条规定有副作用,即可能会激励承包人恶意拖欠农民工工资,造成表明上的建筑工人利益受损的现状。《理解与适用》一书认为,"对承包人恶意拖欠工资、滥用本条解释的行为,人民法院不予支持"。

笔者认为,上述规定在实务中操作起来可能会有很大的难度,尤其是认定真实的"承包人整体的资产负债情况以及现金流情况",会非常的复杂。另外可以想象,实践中对于农名工的工资是否是"恶意拖欠"很难判断。对于因此,本条在实践中如何适用及其效果,还有待于时间的检验。

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