Whether subsequent termination of the charter by the owners after an affirmation was a repudiatory breach
The High Court held that in a case of renunciation or anticipatory breach (as opposed to repudiation based upon an actual breach) it does not necessarily follow that a termination following an affirmation is a repudiatory breach. For if the renunciating party continues to renounce the contract after the affirmation then the acceptance of that continuing renunciation is not a repudiatory breach but a lawful termination of the contract with a right to damages caused by the renunciation.
White Rosebay Shipping SA v Hong Kong Chain Glory Shipping Ltd (Fortune Plum)  EWHC 1355 (Comm) (23 May 2013)
Port is usafe where exposure to a danger cannot be avoided by good navigation and seamanship.
The High Court held that the enquiry in an unsafe port case is not into the conduct of the port authority, but rather, the enquiry in an unsafe port case is into the prospective exposure of the vessel, when arriving using and leaving the port, to a danger which cannot be avoided by good navigation and seamanship.
Gard Marine & Energy Ltd v China National Chartering Co Ltd & Ors (The Ocean Victory)  EWHC 2199 (Comm) (30 July 2013)
Does innocent party still bore the burden of proving its loss on the balance of probabilities if it had accepted the repudiatory breach of the contract-breaker?
… although the innocient party is relieved from any further obligation under contract (i.e. his future contractual liabilities ceased to exist) from the moment of acceptance of repudiatory breach of contract-breaker, but when it comes to assessment of damages available to the innocient party it has to prove that is would have been able to perform if no repudiation had taken place.
Flame SA v Glory Wealth Shipping PTE Ltd  EWHC 3153 (Comm) (22 October 2013).
BIMCO. Laytime Definitions for Charter Parties 2013
Significant developments and changes have taken place in case law and commercial practice since 1993 where laytime definitions were last updated as the Voyage Charter Party Laytime Interpretation Rules (Voylayrules). A group of laytime experts from BIMCO, FONASBA, the CMI and the Baltic Exchange was formed to determine whether the content remained relevant and revise or introduce new provisions where and as required to meet contemporary trading arrangements.
Copies of the Laytime Definitions of Charter Parties 2013 together with explanatory notes are freely available from the Chartering/Special Circulars section of www.bimco.org.
29 October 2013. Revised Meaning of an ‘Oil major’ and ‘Recognised Oil Majors’
While there is, of course, a good commercial sense in the arbitrator’s finding that ‘the tradability of the vessel will be affected by a good or poor report from any of the oil majors’, but proposed reading would require in-service approvals from virtually unlimited set of oil majors because in certain regions companies like Statoil, Cepsa, Repsol or Lukoil secured a significant market share and their good or poor report would certainly affect vessel’s tradability. Say nothing about the fact that both Conoco and Phillips recently began to conduct independent inspections.Read more →
28 October 2013. Added Flame SA v Glory Wealth Shipping PTE Ltd  EWHC 3153 (Comm)
Shipping – Time Charter – COA for 6 cargoes of coal in bulk in each of the years 2009, 2010 and 2011 – Charterers failed to declare laycans for the 5th and 6th shipments of 2009 and for all 6 shipments in 2010 – Assessment of damages for breach of contract – Whether innocent party still bore the burden of proving its loss on the balance of probabilities if it had accepted the repudiatory breach of the "contract-breaker" – Whether the vessel nominated by disponent owners must be owned by the them or be time, voyage or slot chartered by them.Read more →
25 October 2013. Revised: Time Charters. Oil Major Approval
In and before 1999 it seems that some major oil companies were happy to inspect oil tankers and record the results of that inspection on a database, available to subscribers, called SIRE. If an owner wanted to comment on any such inspection report, he was entitled to do so and those comments would also be available on SIRE for all subscribers to see. The relevant oil company would if satisfied then issue an approval of the vessel. The approvals would be dated and would often be expressed to be valid for a particular period of time and thus have an expiry date which an owner could then write in to any contract …
This practice began to change as a result of pollution incidents involving the vessels "ERICA" and "PRESTIGE" in 2002 because statements that those vessels had been "approved" by oil majors led to damaging publicity for the oil majors concerned.
Per Lord Justice Longmore in Transpetrol Maritime Services Ltd v SJB (Marine Energy) BV (The Rowan)  EWCA Civ 198
21 October 2013. Revised: Time Charters. Hire
21 October 2013. Revised: Time Charters. Damages for Repudiation
Although revival of the market is relevant for the purpose of establishing whether the owners’ loss is self-induced and flows from his failure to mitigate it does not in itself provide the correct measure of damages.Read more →
20 October 2013. Revised: Time Charters. Frustration
12 October 2013. New: Time Charters. Employment and Indemnity
Usual form of time charter contract when the charterer requires to have the vessel at his disposal and to be free to choose voyages and cargoes and negotiates bill of lading terms also, adopts the concept that the owner must be expected to grant such freedom only if he was entitled to be indemnified against loss and liability resulting from it. In other words indemnity serves to compensate the owner against losses arising from risks or costs which he has not expressly or implicitly agreed in time charterparty to bear. However, there is no the indemnity for risks which the owner has contractually agreed to take, e.g. navigation of the ship or incidents of navigation, or which arise from his own negligence or breach of contract or which are incidental to the service for which the vessel was required to be available, e.g. marine growth and hull fouling.Read more →
11 October 2013. Revised: Time Charters. Types
Concept of time charter is fundamentally different from one of voyage charter; it is not a contract of carriage of the goods by sea between certain geographical locations but a contract for services rendered by the owners’ vessel during a certain period of time for agreed pay. Basically, a time charter is a contract of lease of the vessel when the owners are paid irrespective whether their vessel employed during the time of lease or not, therefore apart from trip charter neither departure port nor the port of destination is of any importance for the owners.Read more →
11 October 2013. Revised: Time Charters. Delivery and Duration
As to geographical position of the vessel at the date of delivery it must meet requirement that the vessel is at the immediate and effective disposition of the charterers. The concept of laycan has a lot of similarity with one developed in voyage charters, although, terms related to place of delivery in time charter are less stringent as compared with a berth or a port voyage charters. Usually time charter provides for locations such as ‘dropping last outward pilot’ or OPL Singapore, where exact vessel’s location at the moment of delivery is of no importance.Read more →
10 October 2013. Revised: Time Charters. Description of the vessel
Description of the vessel is, naturally, very important to both sides of charterparty contract, because it outlines particulars and characteristics of the subject-matter of contract. The charterers obviously expect from the owners a punctual compliance with these provisions and in case of misdescription may be entitled to terminate contract or insist on rectification. In their turn the shipowners must tender the actual ship as per description in charter and, in the absence of a clearly drafted substitution clause, they are neither bound nor entitled to tender another ship.Read more →
08 October 2013. Revised: Time Charters. Introductory section
Formation of a time charterparty, same as a voyage charter, governed by the ordinary rules of the law of contract, i.e. there must be an offer and acceptance, then the parties must have agreed all the essential terms either in writing or verbally to make the contract binding.
Contract for services. It is necessary to note that a time charter is a contract for services to be rendered to the charterer by the shipowner through the use of the vessel by the shipowner’s own servants, the master and the crew. The charterer has no proprietary interest in the vessel, i.e. ship is not leased or withdrawn, only her services matters to the charterer.
Performance of charter. Duration of a time charter implicate period of the time not the length of single or a number of voyages or geographical rotation. Therefore a time charter unlike a voyage charter, instead of provisions for freight, laytime and demurrage has stipulations for payment of hire, delivery, redelivery and off-hire events.Read more →
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Bill of LadingRead more →
Bills of lading have been known from at least the thirteenth century. At those times shippers (usually the owners of the goods) as a rule accompanied their cargoes on the voyage to destination and bill of lading served only as an invoice of the goods shipped.
Later, in the sixteenth and the seventeenth centuries, when larger ships has begun to carry varied cargoes belonging to several shippers, this practice gradually came to naught and it became the custom to incorporate the terms of the contract of carriage into bill of lading. Finally to meet requirements of businessmen who wished to sell the goods before the vessel reached its destination bill of lading extended its status to a document of title.
LaycanRead more →
The term "laycan" is habitually used in the negotiation of charterparties, to refer to the earliest date at which the laydays can commence and the date after which the charter can be cancelled if the vessel has not by then arrived.
As indicated in the name itself, ‘laycan’ is an agreed time range at the end of which comes the date when the charterers are entitled to exercise their option and cancel the charterparty for non-arrival of the owners’ vessel. The charterers can, but are not obliged to exercise cancellation option. It is not unusual for the parties to come to solution and extend laycan for a day or so, considering market condition and availability of substitute tonnage in the area.
Off-hireRead more →
When the owners let their vessel to the time charterers in consideration of the payment of hire the later entitled to the use of the vessel during contracted period of time. Express provision for punctual advanced payment of hire usually followed by relevant withdrawal wording in time charterparty. Thus, being under strict obligation to pay for services rendered by the owners, the charterers are obviously concerned over uninterrupted employment of the vessel. On the other hand, there are many factors peculiar to shipping business make delays inevitable. To deal with consequences of such delays parties insert certain provisions into the time charter contract, which are primarily collected in an ‘off-hire’ clause.
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… the vice of our modern legislations is that they do not speak to the imagination. Man can be governed only by imagination; without it, man is a brute. It is a mistake to govern men like things; it is by speaking to man’s soul that he can be thrilled …
Words of Napoleon from Mémoires sur le Consulat de 1799 à 1804 par un Ancien Conseiller d’Etat, Thibaudeau 419-424, translated by and cited in Alain Levasseur, "On the Structure of a Civil Code" (1969-1970), 44 Tul. L. Rev. 693 at p. 698.
It is true that Law Merchant is sometimes spoken of as a fixed body of law forming part of the law, and, as it were, coeval with it, but as a matter of legal history this view is altogether incorrect… The Law Merchant is of comparatively recent origin; it is neither more or less than the usages of merchants and traders in the different departments of trade ratified by the decisions of the Courts of Law, which, upon such usages being proved before them, have adopted them as settled law with a view to the interests of trade and public convenience…
Per Chief Justice Cockburn in Goodwin v Robarts (1875) LR 10 Exch 337Visit Law Quotes to find more famous law quotations →
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But justice cannot always be measured in terms of money and in my view a judge is entitled to weigh in the balance the strain the litigation imposes on litigants, particularly if they are personal litigants rather than business corporations, the anxieties occasioned by facing new issues, the raising of false hopes, and the legitimate expectation that the trial will determine the issues one way or the other.
As Lord Griffiths said in Ketteman v Hansel  AC 189Read all quotes on Justice →
The silence was not mere silence, it was overlaid with all that had gone before. It was a speaking silence. The difficulty with silence is that it is normally equivocal. Where, however, it is part of a course of consistent conduct it may be a silence which not only speaks but does so unequivocally. Where silence speaks, there may be a duty on the silent party in turn to speak to rectify the significance of his silence.
Per Rix LJ in Stocznia Gdanska SA v Latvian Shipping Co and others  2 Lloyd’s Reports 436Find more legal definitios in huge collection of case law quotations →
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