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With over 150 years in the maritime sector, we can assist you with all aspects of legal maritime services.

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Equipped with our deep industry knowledge built over a number of years working with stakeholders across the industry, we genuinely understand your business and therefore focus on providing straightforward, practical legal advice tailored to your needs.

Our client base includes many of the world’s leading shipowners, charterers, traders, banks, shipyards and insurers. From shipyard to scrapyard, from factory to receiver, from finance to flotation, we provide the legal services required by the maritime and international trade industries.

We are where you are; with shipping lawyers based in our international offices, including a large team of former mariners, many of whom are located in major ports, shipping or insurance centres, we have the ability and expertise to service your needs wherever they may arise, with significant experience in different jurisdictions and teams which work together seamlessly across time zones.

Dry shipping

We routinely deal with cargo claims, charterparty and bills of lading disputes, and handle all aspects of shipping dispute resolution, from small value claims to high profile, complex, multi-jurisdictional disputes.

Transactions

Our expertise extends to providing legal advice on transactional issues, covering all aspects from commercial contract review of simple and complex contractual relationships, ship sale and purchase, shipbuilding projects, and restructuring.

Financing

Ships are significant capital assets. Whether you are a buyer, builder, operator or financer, you will need expert advice on your rights and liabilities. Our finance lawyers are mainstream shipping lawyers who will provide comprehensive advice on the best strategies, minimising your risk exposure during transactions and achieving the best result for your business.

Yachts and super yachts

Yachts and super yachts are valuable assets which are subject to changing laws and regulations. It is essential that you have someone to help who understands your goals, and protects your interests at every stage of ownership. We advise yacht owners, brokers and some of the world’s largest yacht manufacturers.

Ports

Ports play a crucial role in global trade, both in developed and in emerging and frontier markets and our team advises clients including global port and terminal operators, shipping lines, oil & gas contractors, construction companies, underwriters and banks around the world.

Offshore oil & gas

We also represent the leading providers of marine services. Our expertise extends to the full range of available offshore services, including supply and safety vessels, anchor handlers and dive support, pipe-lay and bury barges, heavy lift and derrick barges.

Admiralty

If the worst case scenario becomes a reality, and your ship runs aground in a remote location or collides or finds itself in trouble in a hostile environment, you will need fast, expert legal advice, and practical guidance for dealing with investigations, witnesses, crews and their families, evidence preservation and the media.

We have a highly trained team of ex-mariners across the world, bringing a wealth of practical, technical and commercial knowledge to every crisis. Having been at sea themselves and having been involved with most of the major casualties, they understand the pressures and realities of reacting to the unexpected.

Personal Injury (Defendant)

Our breadth of expertise in handling defendant personal injury cases extends across the marine industry with instructions from owners, operators and liability underwriters of marine craft including yachts / superyachts, container vessels, passenger and cruise ships, offshore installations, tugs and supply vessels, and bulk carriers.

We have particular expertise defending cases involving fatalities, brain and spinal injury, as well as legionella and norovirus outbreaks. We are also instructed in occupational disease claims including asbestos-related injury. The firm's reputation for handling high profile casualties has inevitably led to Ince advising in highly sensitive cases involving both injury and death. We work closely with specialist Counsel and medical experts to provide the highest level of service and most cost-effective advice.

Piracy/pollution

The ongoing threat of piracy and hijackings continue to generate much concern in the industry. We can help you with all aspects of piracy incidents - the legal and practical aspects of responding to a hijacking, release of vessels, insurance and minimising the risk of such incidents reoccurring.

If oil leaks from your ship and pollutes pristine beaches or marine life, the consequences can be very serious. The incident needs to be managed effectively, or it can spell disaster for everyone involved. 

Emergency Response

Our 24 hour emergency response hotline ensures that you can contact us to obtain focused advice at any time, 365 days of the year: +44 (0)20 7283 6999.

Download our brochures to find out more.

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News & insights on Maritime

Insights / Shipping E-Brief September 2020

24-09-2020 / Maritime

The Shipping E-Brief is a publication providing you with key information on legal decisions and developments in shipping and related business areas.

Shipping E-Brief September 2020

Insights / UK steps up sanctions regime and shipping must navigate carefully

23-09-2020 / Maritime

Following the UK’s departure from the EU, there have been some recent developments with regard to the approach of the UK to sanctions, including the issuance of guidance to the shipping industry on financial sanctions. We summarise some of these recent developments below.

UK steps up sanctions regime and shipping must navigate carefully

Insights / Court considers scope and effect of demurrage clause

16-09-2020 / Maritime

K Line Pte Ltd v. Priminds Shipping (HK) Co Ltd (Eternal Bliss) [2020] EWHC 2373 (Comm)

Court considers scope and effect of demurrage clause

Insights / Court dismisses challenge to award on grounds of procedural unfairness

10-09-2020 / Maritime

This case involved an unsuccessful appeal to the Court, where charterers contended that there was serious irregularity in the way that the sole arbitrator had dealt with two issues in the underlying arbitration, which had caused them substantial injustice. 

Court dismisses challenge to award on grounds of procedural unfairness

Insights / Court declines to imply delivery and discharge terms into contract of carriage

08-09-2020 / Maritime

Sea Master Shipping Inc v. (1) Arab Bank (Switzerland) Limited and (2) Yousef Freiha & Sons SAL (Sea Master) [2020] EWHC 2030 (Comm)

Court declines to imply delivery and discharge terms into contract of carriage

Insights / ICLG Legal Guides 2020

20-08-2020 / Maritime

We are delighted to share with you Ince's articles on ICLG Legal Guides 2020.

ICLG Legal Guides 2020

Insights / ICLG - United Kingdom: Shipping Laws and Regulations

20-08-2020 / Maritime

United Kingdom covers common issues in shipping laws and regulations - including marine casualty, cargo claims, passenger claims, arrest and security - in 40 jurisdictions.

ICLG - United Kingdom: Shipping Laws and Regulations

Insights / ICLG - Gibraltar: Shipping Laws and Regulations

20-08-2020 / Maritime

Gibraltar covers common issues in shipping laws and regulations - including marine casualty, cargo claims, passenger claims, arrest and security - in 40 jurisdictions.

ICLG - Gibraltar: Shipping Laws and Regulations

Insights / ICLG - Greece: Shipping Laws and Regulations

20-08-2020 / Maritime

Greece covers common issues in shipping laws and regulations - including marine casualty, cargo claims, passenger claims, arrest and security - in 40 jurisdictions.

ICLG - Greece: Shipping Laws and Regulations

Insights / ICLG - Germany: Shipping Laws and Regulations

20-08-2020 / Maritime

Germany covers common issues in shipping laws and regulations - including marine casualty, cargo claims, passenger claims, arrest and security - in 40 jurisdictions.

ICLG - Germany: Shipping Laws and Regulations

Insights / ICLG - Singapore: Shipping Laws and Regulations

19-08-2020 / Maritime

Singapore covers common issues in shipping laws and regulations - including marine casualty, cargo claims, passenger claims, arrest and security - in 40 jurisdictions.

ICLG - Singapore: Shipping Laws and Regulations

Insights / The changing face of maritime law and risk - cyber, e-commerce, automation of vessels: shipping laws and regulations 2020

19-08-2020 / Maritime

As the pace of global digitalisation steadily accelerates across many industry sectors, the international maritime industry has similarly continued to adopt technologies aimed at making its processes more efficient and reducing costs. This chapter highlights some key developments in maritime technology, the benefits they bring and the potential risks they present. It considers certain legal, regulatory and practical issues that arise and discusses some of the solutions being implemented across the international maritime sector.

The changing face of maritime law and risk - cyber, e-commerce, automation of vessels: shipping laws and regulations 2020

Insights / Misleading impression as to identity of carrier justifies time extension for misdelivery claim

29-07-2020 / Maritime

The Court has granted a time extension for commencing arbitration proceedings in a misdelivery claim in circumstances in which the correspondence between the Claimant and the ship interests’ lawyers resulted in a misleading impression as to the true identity of the carrier under the bills of lading.

Misleading impression as to identity of carrier justifies time extension for misdelivery claim

Insights / Charterparty hire adjustment terms upheld despite apparent commercial illogicality

27-07-2020 / Maritime

Altera Voyageur Production Limited v. Premier Oil E&P UK Ltd (Voyageur Spirit) [2020] EWHC 1891 (Comm)

Charterparty hire adjustment terms upheld despite apparent commercial illogicality

Insights / The dangers of overlooking a bareboat charter in the charterparty chain

13-07-2020 / Maritime

This decision provides guidance on the circumstances in which the Court will grant a retrospective extension of time for commencing arbitration proceedings.

The dangers of overlooking a bareboat charter in the charterparty chain

Insights / Court finds marina can limit liability

10-07-2020 / Maritime

The Admiralty Court has held that the owners of a marina could limit their liability for damage to property, including vessels, pursuant to s.191 of the Merchant Shipping Act 1995.

Court finds marina can limit liability

Insights / Shipping E-Brief July 2020

09-07-2020 / Maritime

The Shipping E-Brief is a publication providing you with key information on legal decisions and developments in shipping and related business areas.

Shipping E-Brief July 2020

News / The future of shipping - with Bob Sanguinetti and Julian Clark

09-07-2020 / Maritime

Senior partner Julian Clark recently spoke with Bob Sanguinetti, Chief Executive of the UK Chamber of Shipping, of which Ince is a proud member. They discussed exciting plans both for Ince and the Chamber, the state of the shipping sector including emerging challenges and COVID-19, and how both organisations are providing ongoing support to the market.

The future of shipping - with Bob Sanguinetti and Julian Clark

Insights / The limited fiduciary duties of intermediary brokers

06-07-2020 / Maritime

In this case, negotiations for the chartering of two vessels took place via a number of brokers.

The limited fiduciary duties of intermediary brokers

Podcasts / 'Collisions: why are they still happening?' webinar series

01-07-2020 / Maritime

Webinar series, 'Collisions: why are they still happening?', hosted by the Ince Admiralty team. The series of four webinars explore the COLREGS and why collisions are still happening, and considers calls for changes to the COLREGS to accommodate autonomous ships. These webinars use a combination of case studies, Q&A and technical insight.

'Collisions: why are they still happening?' webinar series

Insights / New UK restructuring tool: a potential game changer for the maritime sector

30-06-2020 / Maritime

With some signs of cautious optimism mounting that the shipping industry may have weathered the worst of the challenges posed by the pandemic, companies will need to start considering their restructuring options to ensure that they remain competitive in an uncertain recessionary trading environment.  

New UK restructuring tool: a potential game changer for the maritime sector

Insights / Court asserts its jurisdiction in marine insurance dispute

29-06-2020 / Maritime

In an insurance coverage dispute, the English Commercial Court has held that the insurers had much the better of the argument that the policies in question incorporated an exclusive English Court jurisdiction clause.

Court asserts its jurisdiction in marine insurance dispute

Insights / When is a shipper not a shipper?

24-06-2020 / Maritime

A party named as the shipper in a bill of lading has successfully argued that it was not the shipper under the contract of carriage and that its inclusion in the bill of lading was a mistake.

When is a shipper not a shipper?

News / Ince receives another prestigious Maritime Law Award in Asia

24-06-2020 / Maritime

Ince' Asia maritime team is extremely honoured and pleased to win once again and for the eighth time the prestigious Maritime Law Award at Seatrade Maritime Awards Asia 2020 on 23 June 2020. The Award recognises the law firm that can demonstrate the highest level of commitment and expertise in the maritime legal sector in Asia.

 Ince receives another prestigious Maritime Law Award in Asia

News / Winding up petitions and arbitration agreements: a comparison of the Singapore and HK approaches

15-06-2020 / Maritime

Recent decisions of the Hong Kong and Singapore courts show different approaches to the issue of when a winding-up petition will be allowed to proceed in circumstances where there is an arbitration agreement.

Winding up petitions and arbitration agreements: a comparison of the Singapore and HK approaches

News / Dayang (HK) Marine Shipping Co, Ltd v. Asia Master Logistics Ltd [2020]

15-06-2020 / Maritime

In Dayang (HK) Marine Shipping Co, Ltd v. Asia Master Logistics Ltd [2020] HKCFI 311, the Hong Kong Court of First Instance declined to dismiss a winding-up petition where a debtor was unable to show the existence of a bona fide dispute on substantial grounds, notwithstanding the presence of an arbitration clause in the underlying contract.

Dayang (HK) Marine Shipping Co, Ltd v. Asia Master Logistics Ltd [2020]

News / Winding up petitions & arbitration agreements

15-06-2020 / Maritime

In AnAn Group (Singapore) Pte Ltd v VTB Bank (Public Joint Stock Company) [2020] SGCA 33 (“VTB Bank”) and BWG v BWF [2020] SGCA 36 (“BWF”), the Singapore Court of Appeal examined the issue of what is the appropriate standard of review, when a dispute subject to an arbitration agreement arises, in relation to a debt which forms the basis of a winding-up petition.

Winding up petitions & arbitration agreements

Insights / Interim relief and court interference in arbitral disputes—the approach of the English and Hong Kong courts (Daelim v Bonita)

11-06-2020 / Maritime

Arbitration analysis: Catherine Earnshaw, partner, Ruaridh Guy, managing associate, and Jenny Efstathiou, senior associate, at Ince, London and Hong Kong, compare and contrast, and consider the practical implications of, two related judgments of the English and Hong Kong courts reviewing previous decisions to grant injunctions in respect of claims arising out of a charterparty and related settlement agreement.

Interim relief and court interference in arbitral disputes—the approach of the English and Hong Kong courts (Daelim v Bonita)

News / Court construes International Group’s standard LOI wording in context of charterparty chain

10-06-2020 / Maritime

Trafigura v. Clearlake and Clearlake v. Petrobras (Miracle Hope) [2020] EWHC 995 (Comm)

Court construes International Group’s standard LOI wording in context of charterparty chain

News / Court grants anti-suit injunction in misdelivery claim

08-06-2020 / Maritime

Times Trading Corporation v. National Bank of Fujairah (Dubai Branch) (MV Archagelos Gabriel) [2020] EWHC 1078 (Comm)

Court grants anti-suit injunction in misdelivery claim

News / Ince accepts invitation to join Smart Maritime Network with Senior Partner Julian Clark becoming a member of the Smart Maritime Council

08-06-2020 / Maritime

Ince, the premier global shipping firm and part of the Ince Group, is pleased to announce that it has accepted an invitation to join the Smart Maritime Network (SMN) with Senior Partner Julian Clark assuming a position on the Smart Maritime Council.

Ince accepts invitation to join Smart Maritime Network with Senior Partner Julian Clark becoming a member of the Smart Maritime Council

News / Court finds ship operator can limit liability

01-06-2020 / Maritime

(1) Splitt Chartering APS (2) Stema Shipping A/S (3) Maibau Baustoffhandel GmbH (4) Stema Shipping (UK) Limited (Claimant) v. (1) Saga Shipholding Norway AS (2) RTE Reseau De Transport D’Electricitie SA and others (Stema Barge II) [2020] EWHC 1294 (Admlty)

Court finds ship operator can limit liability

News / Ince partners with Sailors’ Society to champion seafarers as “key workers of the sea” supporting global supply chain

27-05-2020 / Maritime

27 May 2020, London: Ince, the international legal and professional services firm, has partnered with global maritime welfare charity Sailors’ Society, one of the largest seafarers’ support charities in the world, to raise awareness for the plight of seafarers. Dubbed the “key workers of the sea”, seafarers are particularly exposed to the effects of the Coronavirus outbreak.

Ince partners with Sailors’ Society to champion seafarers as “key workers of the sea” supporting global supply chain

News / Ince Partner Rosita Lau got another prestigious accolade - Legal 500 Asia Pacific Hall of Fame

14-05-2020 / Maritime

Hong Kong-based partner Rosita Lau, following her re-appointment to the Hong Kong Maritime Port Board for the third time, received another prestigious accolade.

Ince Partner Rosita Lau got another prestigious accolade - Legal 500 Asia Pacific Hall of Fame

News / Shipping E-Brief May 2020

11-05-2020 / Maritime

The Shipping E-Brief is a publication providing you with key information on legal decisions and developments in shipping and related business areas.

Shipping E-Brief May 2020

News / No extensions of time for delivery in shipbuilding contracts for buyer-induced delay

07-05-2020 / Maritime

Jiangsu Guoxin Corporation Ltd (formerly known as Sainty Marine Corporation Ltd) v. Precious Shipping Public Co. Ltd [2020] EWHC 1030 (Comm) This recent judgment reinforces some important points concerning the prevention principle, notice requirements for time extensions, and the effect of design modifications and non-payment of instalments under an amended SAJ form. The Court found, on an appeal from an arbitration award, that neither the prevention principle applied nor would the yard be entitled to extensions of time for buyer-induced delays where it had failed to serve appropriate notices or exercise other relevant contractual provisions.

No extensions of time for delivery in shipbuilding contracts for buyer-induced delay

News / Court dismisses defences to non-performance under contract of affreightment

07-05-2020 / Maritime

Classic Maritime Inc v. Limbungan Makmur Sdn Bhd and another company [2020] EWHC 619 (Comm) This was the latest dispute under a Contract of Affreightment (“COA”) between Classic Maritime Inc (“Owners”) and Limbungan Makmur Sdn Bhd (“Charterers”), with the Owners claiming damages for unperformed shipments under the COA. In reaching its decision, the Court relied closely on an earlier Court of Appeal judgment relating to the Owners’ claim for damages involving seven unperformed shipments.

Court dismisses defences to non-performance under contract of affreightment

News / Recent amendments to Chapter VI Regulation 2 of SOLAS - Cargo information

06-05-2020 / Maritime

In a recent decision, the Hong Kong courts held that, as of 2009, it was not trade practice for shippers to weigh the container and cargo contents before loading it onto a vessel for carriage between Hong Kong and Guangzhou It may be that this would be the trade practice on other regional and global routes This ruling provides a timely reminder to the liner trade of changes to the law which will be in force in 2016

Recent amendments to Chapter VI Regulation 2 of SOLAS - Cargo information

News / Ince part of the winning Offshore Project Finance Deal of the Year for 2019

04-05-2020 / Energy & Infrastructure, Maritime

Golar LNG & Keppel Capital, FLNG Gimi – US$ 700m Senior Secured Term Loan awarded ‘Offshore Project Finance Deal of the Year’.

Ince part of the winning Offshore Project Finance Deal of the Year for 2019

News / Blockchain: Bills of Lading & Official Documents

23-04-2020 / Maritime

Carriers, charterers, traders and shippers commonly experience the issue of original bills of lading arriving late at a port of discharge, thereby depriving the lawful holder or consignee of timely taking delivery of the cargo. This may delay cargo operations, lead to incurrence of demurrage or detention fees, directly or indirectly contribute to port congestion and/or the incurrence of port costs and expenses.

Blockchain: Bills of Lading & Official Documents

News / Experts’ fiduciary duty of loyalty to clients: practical implications for marine and offshore sectors

22-04-2020 / Maritime

A Company v. X, Y and Z [2020] EWHC 809 (TCC) In this case, companies of the same group were retained as experts by opposing sides in two related arbitration references in respect of an offshore construction project. The Court found that the whole company group, in its capacity as expert, owed a fiduciary duty of loyalty to their client, which was not inconsistent with an expert’s paramount duty to the Court or Tribunal. On this basis, the Court granted an injunction prohibiting the expert group of companies from acting for another party in the arbitration. This decision highlights the need for clients to be quick in retaining their experts when facing complex marine or offshore disputes, given that the number of experts able to give evidence in relation to these fields in courts and tribunals is very limited.

Experts’ fiduciary duty of loyalty to clients: practical implications for marine and offshore sectors

News / COLREGS: Still fit for purpose?

15-04-2020 / Maritime

There has been much debate about the COLREGS over the last 12 months or so, with many suggesting that it is now time for not just some amendments but a total revision of the Rules. So are the COLREGS still fit for purpose?

COLREGS: Still fit for purpose?

News / Court exhibits reluctance to interfere in arbitral process

15-04-2020 / Maritime

Daelim Corporation v. (1) Bonita Company Limited (2) Eastern Media International Corporation and (3) Far Eastern Silo & Shipping (Panama) S.A. (DL Carnation) [2020] EWHC 697 (Comm)

Court exhibits reluctance to interfere in arbitral process

News / We demand that you see to this guarantee right away

08-04-2020 / Maritime

Shanghai Shipyard Co Ltd v. Reignwood International Investment (Group) Company Limited [2020] EWHC 803 (Comm) The Commercial Court has recently given an important decision that highlights how the different types of guarantee provided under shipbuilding contracts can have important consequences as to how quickly a demand has to be paid.

We demand that you see to this guarantee right away

News / Hong Kong Court affirms rule that arbitration clauses must be expressly incorporated into bills of lading

07-04-2020 / Maritime

OCBC Wing Hang Bank Ltd v. Kai Sen Shipping Co Ltd (Yue You 903) [2020] HKCFI 375 This recent Hong Kong case confirms the rule that express wording must be used in order to incorporate an arbitration clause from a charterparty into a bill of lading. General words of incorporation will not be sufficient.

Hong Kong Court affirms rule that arbitration clauses must be expressly incorporated into bills of lading

Insights / Failure to produce bills of lading in support of demurrage claim bars entire claim

07-04-2020 / Maritime

Tricon Energy Ltd v. MTM Trading LLC (MTM Hong Kong) [2020] EWHC 700 (Comm) The Commercial Court has held that where a charterparty requires demurrage to be calculated by reference to bill of lading quantities, and incorporates a demurrage time bar which requires provision of all supporting documents, a claim for demurrage will be time-barred if the shipowner fails to provide copies of the bills of lading within the required time.

Failure to produce bills of lading in support of demurrage claim bars entire claim

News / Supreme Court has no jurisdiction over hull underwriters’ claims against mortgagee bank in vessel scuttling case

03-04-2020 / Maritime

Aspen Underwriting Ltd and others (Appellants) v. Credit Europe Bank NV (Atlantik Confidence) [2020] UKSC 11 In a decision that will be significant for marine and other insurers, the Supreme Court has found that the English courts did not have jurisdiction over claims brought by the hull underwriters of the vessel, Atlantik Confidence, as against the Dutch bank that was the mortgagee of the vessel and also the assignee of the insurance policy and the loss payee. The Supreme Court held that the bank was not bound by the exclusive English jurisdiction clauses in the policy or the settlement agreement with the vessel owners and managers. Nor could the underwriters rely on the special insurance provisions in the recast Brussels Regulation to establish English Court jurisdiction over their claims. The underwriters are now faced with the prospect of pursuing their claims against the bank in the Netherlands.

Supreme Court has no jurisdiction over hull underwriters’ claims against mortgagee bank in vessel scuttling case

News / Chambers And Partners Shipping Guide 2020 by Ince

02-04-2020 / Maritime

The team at Ince recently contributed to the UK chapter of the Chambers And Partners Shipping Guide 2020, which has now been published.

Chambers And Partners Shipping Guide 2020 by Ince

News / Legal update from the Maritime team

31-03-2020 / Maritime

Last week we successfully completed the first post onset of Covid-19 mortgage amendment for one of our ship owning clients on the Marshall Islands Ship Registry.

Legal update from the Maritime team

News / Admiralty Claims in the face of COVID-19 (Gibraltar)

25-03-2020 / Maritime

COVID-19 is, unfortunately, everywhere: on our streets, on our news and on our social media. It dominates our work life and our personal lives. The outbreak has spread from China to Iran and Italy and continues to swiftly move into more and more countries.

Admiralty Claims in the face of COVID-19 (Gibraltar)

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