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

You, Maritime
& Ince, in any case

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.

Yachts and Superyachts

Ince Ports

Ince Shipbuilding & Offshore Construction

Ince modern casualty investigation

News & insights on Maritime

News / Shipping E-brief May 2022

16-05-2022 / 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 2022

News / Court dismisses appeal from arbitration award that challenged findings of fact

09-05-2022 / Maritime

Laysun Service Co Limited v. Del Monte International GMBH [2022] EWHC 699 (Comm) This was a dispute under a contract of affreightment, in which the arbitral tribunal made an award in the Charterers’ favour. The Owners subsequently appealed, alleging that the tribunal had erred in its findings on issues of law. The Court, however, dismissed the challenge, concluding that the Owners were in fact seeking to impugn the arbitrators’ findings of fact, which were not open for appeal.

Court dismisses appeal from arbitration award that challenged findings of fact

News / The IPCC Report and its impact on shipping

09-05-2022 / Maritime

In April 2022, the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) published the Working Group III report on “Mitigation of Climate Change”, the third instalment of the IPCC’s Sixth Assessment Report. This follows the Working Group I report on “The Physical Science Basis” and the Working Group II report on “Impacts, Adaptation and Vulnerability”.

The IPCC Report and its impact on shipping

News / Electronic trade documents: the Law Commission’s recommended reforms

09-05-2022 / Maritime

The Law Commission of England and Wales has now published its final report on electronic trade documents, together with draft legislation for intended presentation to Parliament by May 2022.

Electronic trade documents: the Law Commission’s recommended reforms

News / Court dismisses financing bank’s misdelivery claim for lack of title to sue

04-05-2022 / Maritime

Unicredit Bank AG v. Euronav NV (Sienna) [2022] EWHC 957 (Comm) This was a claim brought by a bank that financed the purchase of a cargo and subsequently sought to recover damages for misdelivery following discharge of the cargo without production of the original bill of lading. The claim failed because, in the circumstances of this case, the bill of lading that had been endorsed to the Bank did not contain or evidence the contract of carriage in respect of the cargo.

Court dismisses financing bank’s misdelivery claim for lack of title to sue

Insights / Court corrects obvious accounting mistake in arbitration award

27-04-2022 / Maritime

In a charterparty dispute, the Court has set aside part of an arbitration award on the grounds that the arbitrator reached a conclusion that was contrary to the common position of the parties, and for which neither party contended, without providing an opportunity for the parties to address him on the issue. In the circumstances, this represented a failure to conduct the proceedings fairly. The decision provides useful guidance on how to proceed where a tribunal makes an obvious mistake in its award but declines to remedy it.

Court corrects obvious accounting mistake in arbitration award

Insights / Court finds interim relief obtained from foreign court breached arbitration agreement

26-04-2022 / Maritime

The English Court has granted an anti-suit injunction to restrain court proceedings brought in Brazil because they breached a charterparty arbitration provision. Anti-suit relief was appropriate because the relief obtained from the Brazilian Court had not been sought in support of substantive proceedings elsewhere but in effect amounted to a determination that left nothing substantive to be decided in arbitration.

Court finds interim relief obtained from foreign court breached arbitration agreement

News / Marine Money London Ship Finance Forum 2022

12-04-2022 / Maritime

We were delighted to be part of the Marine Money London Ship Finance Forum on 11 April 2022.

Marine Money London Ship Finance Forum 2022

Insights / Court considers termination provisions and equitable relief against forfeiture under bareboat charters

08-04-2022 / Maritime

OCM Maritime Nile LLC & Anor v. Courage Shipping Co Ltd & Others (Courage and Amethyst) [2022] EWHC 452 (Comm)

Court considers termination provisions and equitable relief against forfeiture under bareboat charters

News / Agreement for existing DIFC-LCIA arbitrations to be administered by LCIA

01-04-2022 / Maritime

Decree No. 34 of 2021 concerning the Dubai International Arbitration Centre (the ‘Decree’) came into force in September 2021 and aimed to streamline arbitration in Dubai by amalgamating it under one institution – the Dubai International Arbitration Centre (‘DIAC’). For a summary of the Decree’s contents.

Agreement for existing DIFC-LCIA arbitrations to be administered by LCIA

News / InceDemurrage launches as industry-first fully integrated expert analysis and legal advisory service for demurrage claims

28-03-2022 / Maritime

Our collaboration with Demurrage Desk combines integrated expert demurrage and laytime insights with legal advisory on claims and disputes, elevating demurrage processes to a higher standard

InceDemurrage launches as industry-first fully integrated expert analysis and legal advisory service for demurrage claims

News / Rosita Lau's appointment of Hong Kong Maritime and Port Board (New Term 2022-24) and Ince’s presence in the Board in the New Term

25-03-2022 / Maritime

On 25 March 2022, the Hong Kong Government announced the appointed individual members and institutional members of the next term (April 2022 to March 2024) of the Hong Kong Maritime and Port Board (HKMPB), and Partner Rosita Lau is re-appointed for the fourth time as a member of the Board in her personal capacity, and is also appointed as the new Chairperson of the Promotion and External Relation Committee of HKMPB.

Rosita Lau's appointment of Hong Kong Maritime and Port Board (New Term 2022-24) and Ince’s presence in the Board in the New Term

News / Court upholds claim for contaminated fuel oil

21-03-2022 / Maritime

This dispute, arising out of the sale and purchase of a quantity of crude oil, involved a number of contractual issues that commonly arise in commodities cases. Among other things, the Court considered what the terms of the sale contract were, whether there was a breach of the quality provisions and what was the appropriate measure of damages. Interestingly, the Court decided that this was not a “battle of the forms” scenario so the “last shot” doctrine did not apply in determining when the agreement was concluded and on what terms.

Court upholds claim for contaminated fuel oil

News / High Court assesses insurable interest principle and late payment damages claim

16-03-2022 / Insurance, Maritime

Quadra Commodities SA v XL Insurance Company SE & Ors [2022] EWHC 431 (Comm) This recent High Court case deals with a claim arising from the “Agroinvestgroup Fraud” which affected the Ukrainian agribusiness in early 2019. It provides useful guidance on the interpretation of all-risks cargo policies and, for the first time, how the Courts will treat claims for late payment damages under section 13A of the Insurance Act 2015.

High Court assesses insurable interest principle and late payment damages claim

News / Ince appoints new Joint Managing Partners for Dubai office

16-03-2022 / Maritime

We have recently appointed Partners Mohamed El Hawawy and Alastair Holland as new Joint Managing Partners of our Dubai office. Mohamed and Alastair’s broad and extensive sector expertise, as well as their combined experience and networks in the UAE, strongly position them to lead our presence in the Middle East. As new Joint Managing Partners, they remain unequivocally committed to our clients and look forward to progressing our growth plans within the region.

Ince appoints new Joint Managing Partners for Dubai office

News / Shipping E-brief March 2022

09-03-2022 / 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 March 2022

News / Russian sanctions - a force majeure to be reckoned with?

09-03-2022 / Maritime

MUR Shipping BV v. RTI Ltd [2022] EWHC 467 (Comm) This dispute related to Owners’ purported exercise of a force majeure provision in a contract of affreightment in response to Charterers’ difficulties paying freight in US dollars (the contractual currency of payment) due to the impact of US sanctions on Russia. Allowing an appeal from the arbitral tribunal’s decision on this point, the Court held that the “reasonable endeavours” requirement in force majeure clauses did not require Owners to accept non-contractual performance and so did not oblige Owners in this case to accept payment in Euros instead of US dollars.

Russian sanctions - a force majeure to be reckoned with?

News / Ukraine/Russia: how this may impact shipbuilding contracts

08-03-2022 / Maritime

As developments in Ukraine unfold, the international response to the situation is evolving on a daily basis.

Ukraine/Russia: how this may impact shipbuilding contracts

News / Ukraine/Russia crisis: potential implications for shipping contracts

02-03-2022 / Maritime

Following recent developments in Ukraine, the international community has acted quickly in introducing sanctions against Russia, targeting a number of Russian entities and Russian individuals, including specified shipping companies and their vessels, as well as financial institutions. Key are the US, EU and UK sanctions against Russia. The scope of these sanctions is continuously evolving in response to the escalating situation and it is important for those who may be impacted to keep a close eye on daily developments.

Ukraine/Russia crisis: potential implications for shipping contracts

News / UK imposes prohibition on port entry and UK registration to Russian linked shipping

02-03-2022 / Maritime

In a development that will have a potentially wide-ranging impact on shipping, the UK has introduced a prohibition on Russian-connected ships from (i) using UK ports and (ii) being registered in the UK.

UK imposes prohibition on port entry and UK registration to Russian linked shipping

News / Court of Appeal agrees charterparty affirmed notwithstanding reservation of rights

28-02-2022 / Maritime

SK Shipping Europe Ltd v. Capital VLCC 3 Corp (C Challenger) [2022] EWCA Civ 231 Both the Commercial Court and the Court of Appeal have found that the Charterers in this case were not entitled to rescind the charterparty because they had affirmed the contract.

Court of Appeal agrees charterparty affirmed notwithstanding reservation of rights

News / Can a claimant always pick the jurisdiction with the highest limitation of liability? Round two

24-02-2022 / Maritime

Pusan Newport Co Ltd v. Owners and/or demise charterers of the ships or vessels “Milano Bridge” and “CMA CGM Musca” and “CMA CGM Hydra” (Milano Bridge) [2022] HKCA 157 We have previously reported on the first instance decision in this matter, in which the defendant Owners (represented by Ince Hong Kong) were successful in obtaining a stay of proceedings brought in Hong Kong by the plaintiff Terminal.

Can a claimant always pick the jurisdiction with the highest limitation of liability? Round two

News / Court finds letter of indemnity obligations engaged

24-02-2022 / Maritime

Aramco Trading Fujairah FZE v. Gulf Petrochem FZC (MV Kronviken) [2022] EWHC 288 (Comm) This case is another example of the English courts dismissing unmeritorious challenges to letters of indemnity (LOIs) issued against delivery of goods without production of original bills of lading. The message is clear: the English courts will not entertain unwarranted attempts to avoid obligations under a valid and enforceable LOI.

Court finds letter of indemnity obligations engaged

News / EU Blocking Regulation, US sanctions and contractual termination – when sanctions and business collide

18-02-2022 / Commodities & Trade, Maritime

In a recent ruling, the European Court of Justice (“ECJ”) was asked to consider the interpretation of Article 5 of EC Regulation No. 2771/96 of 22 November 1996 (commonly referred to as the “Blocking Regulation”) in relation to the termination, by a German telecoms company, of a contract with a bank subject to US sanctions.

EU Blocking Regulation, US sanctions and contractual termination – when sanctions and business collide

News / UK lays framework for increased Russian sanctions in the event diplomacy fails

15-02-2022 / Maritime

The UK Government has introduced amendments to the UK sanctions on Russia, which came into force at 5pm UK time on 10 February 2022 and which significantly increase the scope to sanction entities linked to the Russian Government and those involved across the Russian economy.

UK lays framework for increased Russian sanctions in the event diplomacy fails

News / The Law Commission’s final say on Electronic Trade Documents

14-02-2022 / Maritime

The Law Commission is an independent advisory body to the UK government. Its eagerly awaited final report on the legal recognition of trade documents such as electronic bills of lading is expected to be published in the spring of 2022.

The Law Commission’s final say on Electronic Trade Documents

Insights / Publicity order granted in first reported case under the Trade Secrets (Enforcement, etc.) Regulations 2018

09-02-2022 / Maritime

Salt Ship Design AS v. Prysmian Powerlink SRL [2021] EWHC 3583 (Comm)

Publicity order granted in first reported case under the Trade Secrets (Enforcement, etc.) Regulations 2018

News / No binding fixture and no concluded arbitration agreement where subjects not lifted

08-02-2022 / Maritime

DHL Project & Chartering Ltd v. Gemini Ocean Shipping Co Ltd (Newcastle Express) [2022] EWHC 181 (Comm) In this recent charterparty dispute, the Commercial Court has set aside an arbitration award on the basis that the Tribunal had no jurisdiction to rule in circumstances where the parties had not concluded a binding contract (or arbitration agreement) after conditions to which the fixture were expressed to be subject (“subjects” or “subs”) were not lifted.

No binding fixture and no concluded arbitration agreement where subjects not lifted

News / Wai Yue Loh recognised in 'The Top 100 Chinese Elite Lawyers in China'

25-01-2022 / Maritime

On 24 January 2022, the China Business Law Journal announced their The A-List 2021, which recognises the Top 100 Chinese Elite Lawyers in China.

Wai Yue Loh recognised in 'The Top 100 Chinese Elite Lawyers in China'

News / Ince achieve top rankings in the new Chambers and Partners Greater China Region 2022 Guide

18-01-2022 / Insurance, Maritime

The firm maintained its high rankings in Shipping and Insurance across China and Hong Kong jurisdictions.

Ince achieve top rankings in the new Chambers and Partners Greater China Region 2022 Guide

News / Ince recognised as a Top Ranked Leading Firm in The Legal 500 Asia Pacific 2022

18-01-2022 / Maritime

The Legal 500 Asia Pacific 2022 results have been published; our shipping practice in China and Hong Kong retained their Tier 1 ranking, and partners Paul Ho and David Beaves ranked as "Hall of Fame" for a second consecutive year since its inception in 2020. Rosita Lau was also ranked in the “Hall of Fame” for a third consecutive year. Ince has the largest number of “Hall of Fame” shipping lawyers from a single firm on the list.

Ince recognised as a Top Ranked Leading Firm in The Legal 500 Asia Pacific 2022

News / MEPC 77 and its impact on decarbonisation of shipping

23-12-2021 / Maritime

We know that the Glasgow Climate Pact was agreed at COP 26, emphasising the urgent need for a rapid and sustained decline of global greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions. The Marine Environment Protection Committee’s 77th meeting (MEPC 77), held two weeks after, was considered by many as a key test of IMO’s ability to act upon the Paris Agreement targets by delivering a number of GHG reduction measures.

MEPC 77 and its impact on decarbonisation of shipping

Insights / Court of Appeal finds charterers’ associated company not barge “operator” for limitation purposes

21-12-2021 / Maritime

This was a dispute over whether an associate company of the charterers was entitled to limit its liability in respect of a barge that was involved in an incident off Dover that resulted in a claim for about Euros 55 million worth of damage.

Court of Appeal finds charterers’ associated company not barge “operator” for limitation purposes

Insights / Court of Appeal confirms seller’s obligation to return advance payment following non-delivery of goods

20-12-2021 / Maritime

Nord Naphtha Ltd v. New Stream Trading AG [2021] EWCA Civ 1829

Court of Appeal confirms seller’s obligation to return advance payment following non-delivery of goods

News / Meet the Seatrade Maritime 20 Under 40: Leaders of Tomorrow – Natalie Jensen and Paul Katsouris

15-12-2021 / Maritime

Meet the Seatrade Maritime 20 Under 40: Leaders of Tomorrow

Meet the Seatrade Maritime 20 Under 40: Leaders of Tomorrow – Natalie Jensen and Paul Katsouris

Insights / Court of Appeal agrees cargo liable to contribute in general average following ransom payment

03-12-2021 / Maritime

Herculito Maritime Ltd & others v. Gunvor International BV & others (Polar) [2021] EWCA Civ 1828

Court of Appeal agrees cargo liable to contribute in general average following ransom payment

Insights / Shipping E-Brief November 2021

26-11-2021 / 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 November 2021

Insights / Cyber security – have you exercised due diligence to make your ship seaworthy?

25-11-2021 / Maritime

The recent, and very important, UK Supreme Court decision in Alize 1954 & another v. Allianz Elementar Versicherung & others (CMA CGM Libra) [2021] UKSC 51 has provided a timely and salutory reminder to shipowners and operators of the importance of being able to demonstrate that their ship is seaworthy if they are successfully to defend claims brought against them by cargo interests and others.

Cyber security – have you exercised due diligence to make your ship seaworthy?

Insights / Court orders specific performance of obligations under letter of indemnity

24-11-2021 / Maritime

Navig8 Chemical Pools Inc v. Aeturnum Energy International Pte Ltd (Navig8 Ametrine) [2021] EWHC 3132 (Comm)

Court orders specific performance of obligations under letter of indemnity

Insights / What does demurrage cover?

24-11-2021 / Maritime

K Line PTE Ltd v. Priminds Shipping (HK) Co Ltd (Eternal Bliss) [2021] EWCA Civ 1712

What does demurrage cover?

Insights / Seller of defective goods entitled to maintain claim for price

23-11-2021 / Maritime

Readie Construction Limited v. Geo Quarries Limited [2021] EWHC 3030 (QB)

Seller of defective goods entitled to maintain claim for price

Insights / Marine Money Korea 2021

22-11-2021 / Maritime

Sung-Hwan (SD) Choi, Partner, moderated the session 'Focus on Korea Ship Finance: International and Domestic Outlook and Opportunities at the Marine Money Virtual Korea conference'.

Marine Money Korea 2021

Insights / “Zoned out”: Court confirms applicable time zone for notification of demurrage claims

18-11-2021 / Maritime

The Court has considered which time zone applies to determine the date of completion of discharge for the purposes of deciding whether notification of a demurrage claim was made too late. In their article, Natalie Jensen and Monika Humphreys-Davies review the decision and explain why the Court held that it was the time zone at the place of discharge.

“Zoned out”: Court confirms applicable time zone for notification of demurrage claims

Insights / COP26 and its impact on Shipping

16-11-2021 / Maritime

These are some key takeaways arising out of COP26 affecting the maritime sector

COP26 and its impact on Shipping

Insights / Supreme Court confirms defective passage plan may render vessel unseaworthy

11-11-2021 / Maritime

Alize 1954 and CMA CGM SA v. Allianz Elementar Versicherungs AG & Others (CMA CGM Libra) [2021] UKSC 51

Supreme Court confirms defective passage plan may render vessel unseaworthy

Insights / The uncertainty continues… Post-Brexit recognition and enforcement of judgments: UK still seeking accession to Lugano Convention

19-10-2021 / Maritime

On 31 December 2020, the Brexit transition period ended. As a result, the UK’s regime for recognising and enforcing judgments within Europe ceased to be governed by the Brussels regime, primarily the recast Brussels Regulation (EU member states), and the Lugano Convention 2007 (EU member states, Iceland, Norway and Switzerland).

The uncertainty continues… Post-Brexit recognition and enforcement of judgments: UK still seeking accession to Lugano Convention

Events / Maritime Week Gibraltar 2021

18-10-2021 / Maritime

Maritime Week Gibraltar 2021 is a highly informative, multi-format interactive event, designed to showcase the many shipping, port and maritime services offered in Gibraltar to a wider international audience.

Maritime Week Gibraltar 2021

Insights / Court considers breach of confidentiality and unlawful conspiracy claims in ship design dispute

18-10-2021 / Maritime

Salt Ship Design AS v. Prysmian Powerlink SRL [2021] EWHC 2633 (Comm)

Court considers breach of confidentiality and unlawful conspiracy claims in ship design dispute

News / AfCFTA and Energy & Infrastructure

11-10-2021 / Energy & Infrastructure, Maritime

This article is the third in a series of articles looking at the impact of the African Continental Free Trade Area (the “AfCFTA”) on various practice areas and industry sectors that our clients operate in. This article focuses on Energy and Infrastructure and addresses some of the key questions our clients have asked us.

AfCFTA and Energy & Infrastructure

Insights / Witness evidence reforms now apply in the Admiralty Court

07-10-2021 / Maritime

Following much discussion, the witness evidence reforms have now made their way to the Admiralty Court. The provisions now apply to trial witness statements signed on or after 1 October 2021 in Admiralty Court proceedings and constitute a further reminder that a witness statement must be exactly that – a statement in the words of the witness.

Witness evidence reforms now apply in the Admiralty Court

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