A South American port agent was asked by the owners of a vessel to provide a quote for the costs of discharging a shipment of project cargo.

A liner agent booked a container of calcium hypochlorite to be moved from a port in the Middle East to Europe. Calcium hypochlorite is a dangerous cargo, with an IMO classification of 5.1. The shipping line had sent clear instructions to the agent prohibiting the loading of this cargo, along with a number of other dangerous cargoes. The agent appeared to have overlooked this instruction.

A firm of agents was asked to book a tractor for shipment from Europe to the Middle East. They quoted a rate based on the weight and realised after the booking was confirmed that they should have quoted a rate based on the cubic meters of the vehicle. The difference was a freight amount of US$12,500. The agents negotiated with the shipping line, who agreed to reduce the amount they required by US$5,000. ITIC paid the remaining amount.

A ship agent was contacted by charterers. The charterers asked the agent to obtain a quote from a local port on how much it would cost to discharge two parcels weighing 70mt using the shore crane. The agent contacted their usual sub-agent in the port, by telephone, and were given an estimate of US$2,750 per shift, so a total of US$5,500. This estimate was passed by the agent to the charterer, and on this basis the cargo was fixed.

A recent case in which ITIC supported a ship agent Member in pursuing a claim in the New Zealand High Court shows that timing can be everything when it comes to pursuing a claim against a ship owned by a company in financial difficulty.

A ship agency had persistent problems obtaining settlement of port disbursements from a recognised and important ship operator in Vietnam. They reported the problem under their ITIC, Rule 10, additional legal expenses and debt collection cover.

A mistake in the calculation of port dues for two pro forma invoices happened when a ship agent incorrectly used the cheaper rate for malt, instead of that for wheat. The cargoes of wheat were discharged from two ships and the final invoices for port dues were sent out, before the error was discovered.

Notice of readiness was tendered by a ship on arriving at a port in the Middle East. The local port agent then submitted all the relevant cargo declarations, which included a document which the agent had translated into Arabic and English, which described the cargo and the names of the consignees.

A ship agent was named as a second defendant by cargo interests in a claim for damage to significant quantities of imported aluminium.

A ship agent issued a manifest for seven containers of fruit to be shipped from the Caribbean. The system used did not allow for a zero figure to be put in front of the decimal point, so the temperature read as “-.5C”.

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