Claims Review 33

11/09/2015
A port agent was appointed by the owners of a chemical tanker to attend a vessel in respect of a call at a European port. As the agent did not have an office at that particular port, they engaged their usual sub-agent to assist locally.

11/09/2015
A ship broker was negotiating a voyage charter with an East African discharge range. The charterers were concerned about the potential costs of additional piracy cover which, if applicable, was to be for their account. The broker discussed the costs with owners and a lump sum of US$ 150,000 was agreed. The broker reported back to the charterers that they had “an East Africa clause” limiting the cost. A clause was inserted into the main terms recap “plus lump sum US$ 150,000 all inclusive for piracy cover”. Both owners and charterers agreed the recap.

11/09/2015
It is four years since the English Supreme Court held that expert witnesses involved in legal proceedings no longer enjoyed protection from liability for negligence. This is a case of a global marine consultancy firm which was engaged as experts by the underwriters of a hull & machinery policy. 

11/09/2015
A cargo receiver presented to a ship agent’s office an original bill of lading in respect of a parcel of Methyl tert-butyl ether (also known as MTBE). After acknowledging receipt of the bill of lading, the receptionist failed to pass it to the person in charge (PIC) of the particular vessel’s call. The document was mislaid.

11/09/2015
The following describes two different ways in which ITIC’s actions secured payment of outstanding commission. In both cases the commission was undisputed but the owners unreasonably delayed payment.

11/09/2015
A safety auditor was engaged by an oil & gas exploration company to conduct a routine operational safety audit of an air charter operator. The client was particularly interested in the safety performance of the operator’s two turbo-prop aircraft. On arrival at the operator’s base, the auditor was advised that one turboprop was undergoing routine maintenance at a maintenance repair and overhaul (MRO) facility in Canada.

11/09/2015
A commercial manager sent vessel details to a port agent in the Far East. The agent needed the details to complete an advance declaration to the port authorities. The vessel name ended with the numeral one. When sending the message the commercial manager typed the name using a capital letter “I” rather than number “1”. The agent repeated this in the documentation sent to the authorities.

11/09/2015
A naval architect based in France had designed a yacht for a customer (the claimant) which was to be built by a shipyard in Thailand. The vessel was built but suffered from structural deformities, including warping of the hull, essentially rendering her a total loss. The claimant alleged that the design of the yacht was negligent and, as such, this was the cause of their loss. The damages they claimed were substantial as they alleged (a) total loss of the vessel and (b) storage costs for a number of years. The claimant obtained expert reports in both Thailand and France and based their claim on the contents of these reports.

11/09/2015
In the United States, the Merchant Marine Act of 1920 (“The Jones Act”) in essence provides that all merchandise transported by water between U.S. ports must be carried on U.S. flag ships. 

11/09/2015
A railway design engineer contracted with a third party to design a particular type of rail switches. The designs were drafted and the manufacture was contracted to a third party.

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