Ince & Co looks at passing costs liability down a charterparty chain

The judgment in Occidental Chartering Inc v Progress Bulk Carriers Ltd (The Chada Naree) [2012] EWHC 3515 (Comm) deals with the recoverability of the costs of an arbitration as damages in a series of arbitration references, notwithstanding the absence of an arbitration reference for one of the links in the charterparty chain.

The Commercial Court, on appeal from an arbitration award, held that where there was a claim being passed down through a chain of charterparties and there was a break in the arbitration  references, this would not necessarily prevent the liability from being passed on through the chain. The decision is significant because of the frequency with which charterparty chain disputes arise in maritime arbitration.

The vessel, Chada Naree, was the subject of a string of charterparties. Precious Garnets Ltd were the registered owners and they time-chartered her to Occidental Services Corporation…

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