Category: U.S. Maritime Cases
Shipping industry court rulings and arbitration awards under U.S. law.
Transportacion Maritima Mexicana, SA. de C.V. v Alia Global Logistics, S.A. de C.V. (M/T “King Gregory”) – SMA 4429, 1 November 2021
PURCHASE CONTRACTS – FORCE MAJEURE – TIME IS OF THE ESSENCE CLAUSE – LOSS OF PROFITS – CALCULATION OF DAMAGES
When Respondent failed to ship purchased cargoes in a timely manner, Claimant charged the Respondent failed to perform its obligations under two separate purchase contracts and sought damages, interest, legal, and arbitration fees. Respondent claimed force majeure for changes in Saudi Arabian export laws and delays due to the holy month of Ramadan and Eid holiday.
FORCE MAJEURE – DEMURRAGE – DISPONENT OWNER – LOSS OF EARNINGS
After 46 days at load port awaiting cargo, the Claimant terminated the contract claiming breach of charterparty. The Respondent claimed force majeure due to supplier issues. Claimant sought damages plus fees, costs and interest.
MEDITERRANEAN IRON ORE VOYAGE CHARTER – FAILURE TO PROVIDE CARGO – DAMAGES – CALCULATION OF DAMAGES – DEMURRAGE – FORCE MAJEURE – GOVERNMENT INTERFERENCE
Seacape Shipping and Trading (Claimant) alleged Metalex 2000 (Respondent) breached the voyage charter for failing to provide cargo and subsequently claimed for damages and demurrage. The Respondent claimed government interference and force majeure but participated only minimally in the arbitration.
Prax Petroleum Ltd. and Harvest Energy Ltd., v. Tricon Energy Ltd, (The “Stena Conquest” & “Silver Gwen”) – SMA 4417, 8 Feb 2021
SALES CONTRACT – DEMURRAGE – PUBLIC DOCK CLAUSE – COMMENCEMENT OF LAYTIME
Two vessels encountered delays whilst awaiting berth, resulting in delivered Seller claiming demurrage. Relying upon a public dock clause in the marine provisions, Buyer insisted time waiting for berths did not count and that rather time only starts after the vessels’ gangways were secured. Owner claimed contract confirmations, which included a laytime commencing clause, superseded Marine Provisions, and that laytime began after the tender of NOR
Brujo Finance Company v Sea Energy Company (MT “Alkimos”) v ES Euro shipping AG (MT “Alkimos”) – SMA 4388, 3 Jul 2020
ASBATANKVOY – KOLMAR TERMS – VIOLATION OF US SANCTIONS – SANCTIONS CLAUSE – STS TRANSFER – ALTERNATIVE ORDERS – PARTIAL FINAL AWARD – SUBJECT MOTION – DISCERNABLE RISK – VENEZUELA
The consolidated arbitration between the Owner and Respondents centered on whether the owner validly invoked the Charter’s Sanctions Clause when demanding alternative orders (Subject Motion). The owner claimed a discernable risk that the ship-to-ship transfer of cargo could have violated US Sanctions against Venezuela. This partial final award is issued solely in response to the Subject Motion and does not address any other disputes between the Owner and Respondents.
Ace Quantum Chemical Tankers CV v Nordic Tankers Trading. (MN “Chem Sirius”) – SMA No.4392, 26 July 2020
SPOT CHARTER – PRORATED WAITING TIME – SUSPENDED LAYTIME – DROPPED TENDER
Vessel tendered NOR whilst charterer’s berth was available and after awaiting a short period of time, went to another berth. Thereafter, charterer’s berth was occupied and vessel periodically waited for charterer’s berth and worked berths for other charterers’ accounts. Owner claimed as demurrage those periods of time whilst vessel was awaiting charterer’s berth whilst it was charterer’s position that the root cause of the overall delay in berthing was vessel’s decision to not work charterer’s berth when given the opportunity.
DETENTION – FORCE MAJEURE – DAMAGES – MITIGATION – CANCELLED C/P
When Charterer’s supplier failed to provide its cargo due to Charterer’s attempt to re-negotiate the sale, Charterer was forced to cancel its C/P with the lifting vessel’s owner. Owner then endeavored to mitigate the damages via an internal fixture amongst a rising freight market.
Ardmore MR Pool LLC (Ardmore Shipping) v Orient Source (HK) Ltd. (The “Ardmore Sealancer”) – SMA No. 4372, 22 Jul 2019
ASBATANKVOY – NAMED PORT – NAMED BERTH – Q88 – FOREIGN FLAG RESTRICTION – INVALID NOR – CARGO AVAILABILITY – DEADFREIGHT – DEMURRAGE – ADDRESS COMMISSION
When Charterer was either unable to provide a cargo or Vessel was not allowed admittance to the load port due to its flag, Owner cancelled the charter party and claimed for deadfreight and demurrage. It was also noted that the Vessel may have tendered a premature NOR from just outside the load port.