Maritime Updates

Read need-to-know updates, commentary, and analysis on Maritime issues written by leading professionals.
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FMC Proposes New Rules for Ocean Common Carriers and Marine Terminal Operators

The U.S. Federal Maritime Commission (FMC) issued its Notice of Proposed Rulemaking (NPR) in FMC Docket 16-04 on Aug. 15, 2016. The FMC's July 2016 vote in favor of issuing the NPR advances a multiyear regulatory review....more

OW Bunker in Singapore – where are we?

Although the Singapore courts have not, to date, been required to consider the legal issues which have recently come before the English courts in the Res Cogitans, the cases which have come before the Singapore courts...more

India: A False Dawn for Foreign OSV Owners

India’s ambitious drive to reduce dependence on foreign hydrocarbon imports is expected to spur almost US$30 billion of exploration and production investments including in the offshore sector. An increase in offshore...more

Collateral lies: The lie is dishonest but the claim is not

The Supreme Court rules that a collateral lie embellishing a valid claim does not amount to a fraudulent claim. Versloot Dredging BV and another (Appellants) v HDI Gerling Industrie Versicherung AG and others [2016] UKSC...more

The New JADE: Energizing Jones Act Enforcement

The U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP) recently announced the creation of a new enforcement division in the New Orleans Field Office focused solely on the Jones Act: The National Jones Act Division of Enforcement...more

Distinguishing ‘collateral lies’ from the fraudulent claims rules in insurance contracts: the lie is dishonest but the claim is...

In Versloot Dredging BV and another v HDI Gerling Industrie Versicherung AG and others [2016] UKSC 45, handed down, last month, the Supreme Court ruled that a “collateral lie” made during the course of an insurance claim...more

Many Big Announcements for the UAS Industry and its Safety and Privacy Initiatives

The commercial drone industry is projected to generate over $82 billion for the U.S. economy and over 100,000 new jobs by 2025. Last week, at the White House Office of Science and Technology Policy’s (OSTP) “Workshop on...more

CBP Announces the “JADE”—A New Enforcement Division for the Jones Act

Action Item: The creation of the National Jones Act Division of Enforcement (“JADE”) signals that U.S. Customs and Border Protection has made Jones Act outreach and enforcement a national priority. U.S. and foreign...more

Court of Appeal rules on indefinite demurrage claims

MSC Mediterranean Shipping Company S.A. v. Cottonex Anstalt - [2015] EWHC 283 (Comm) - A Court of Appeal decision handed down on 27 July 2016 of this week ruled that demurrage on detained containers, which could not...more

U.S. Coast Guard Updates Marine Casualty Reporting Forms

Action Item: The U.S. Coast Guard released an updated version of the CG-2692 forms for reports of marine casualties, commercial diving casualties, and outer continental shelf-related casualties. Vessel owners and operators...more

U.S. Customs Aims to Increase Enforcement of the Jones Act

In what could foretell a significant increase in the enforcement of the coastwise trade provisions of the Jones Act, U.S. Customs and Border Protection (Customs) announced on July 18 the creation of the National Jones Act...more

From the Benesch Transportation Archives: To Delivery....And Beyond!: The Boundaries of Carrier Liability for Unloading (A Clear...

Introduction: Carmack Boundaries and the Blurring of Unloading Functions - Under the Carmack Amendment, a carrier is liable for the actual loss of goods which “arrive” damaged 49 U.S.C. §4706(a)(1). But when does that...more

OSHA Promulgates New Rule on Respirable Silica Particles

Workers who inhale very small crystalline silica particles are at increased risk of developing serious — and often deadly — silica-related diseases. These tiny particles (known as “respirable” particles) can penetrate deep...more

Drones – Is the Maritime Industry Ready?

Unmanned aerial systems (UAS), or “drones” in common parlance, are not a part of the historical maritime vocabulary. At least not yet. While the term “drones” may conjure images from science fiction, the reality is that...more

China Loses Claims to the South China Sea in Landmark Decision

On Tuesday, China received a binding decision from the Permanent Court of Arbitration at The Hague, Netherlands, regarding territorial claims in the South China Sea. The international tribunal ruled unanimously that China’s...more

Supreme Court Upholds Finality of Arbitral Awards

A recent Supreme Court decision raises issues over the extent of court intervention in the arbitration process and reminds us of the importance of carefully selecting institutional rules so as to avoid (if necessary) the...more

Award issued by Permanent Court of Arbitration in South China Sea dispute

A ruling in the long-running South China Sea dispute was released by the Permanent Court of Arbitration in The Hague on Tuesday and has immediately become global front-page news. Initiated by the Philippines against...more

Panama Canal Update: New Locks, Bigger Ships

The hubbub surrounding the United Kingdom’s decision to leave the European Union overshadowed the opening of two new locks on the Panama Canal on June 26th. The expansion of the canal has the potential to disrupt intermodal...more

“A Weight on Your Shoulders” – New Weighing Obligations Upon Shippers and Carriers From 1 July 2016

On 1 July 2016 the International Maritime Organisation’s amendments to the Safety of Life at Sea (“SOLAS”) Convention Chapter VI enter into force. From this date, all packed containers must be accompanied by Verified Gross...more

International Code for the Construction and Equipment of Ships Carrying Liquefied Gases in Bulk – IGC Code 2016

This client alert considers some of the recent amendments to the IGC Code with which new-build gas carriers have had to comply from 1 July 2016. These changes to the IGC Code are designed to give more flexibility in gas...more

International Maritime Bureau warns of cyber attacks

Following the issuance of Plymouth University Maritime Cyber Threats Research Group study on the risk of cyber threats, the International Maritime Bureau (IMB) recently issued a warning to shipping and maritime companies to...more

Coast Guard Issues Inspection of Towing Vessels Final Rule

The U.S. Coast Guard Inspection of Towing Vessels Final Rule under 46 CFR Subchapter M takes effect on July 20, 2016. The Rule, published this week, has its roots in the Coast Guard and Maritime Transportation Act of 2004,...more

Focus on Oman: Diplomacy and Dividends

The crucial role of Oman, a sultanate located at the southeastern tip of the Arabian Peninsula, is becoming apparent as the dust settles on the recent Iranian nuclear deal. Oman is adept at balancing relationships in a...more

The Second Circuit Requires Insureds To Be Truthful With Its Insurers

In a twist on the old adage, “bad facts make bad law”, the Second Circuit’s recent decision in Fireman’s Fund Insurance Company v. Great American Insurance Company of New York, Civil Action No. 14-1346-cv, 2016 WL 2943139 (2d...more

Final Rule On Inspection Of Towing Vessels Published After 12 Years In The Making

Action Item: The recently published Subchapter M Final Rule establishes a comprehensive safety system and inspection program for towing vessels. Stakeholders involved in the operation or ownership of towing vessels should...more

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