Commencement of Laytime

Author(s)                 Donald Davies
Publisher Informa Law from Routledge
Date 2013
Pages 368
Format pdf
Size 1.6 Mb

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   The object of this book is to research the English common law in relation to the subject of the commencement of laytime, to consider criticisms of that law, and to look at various remedies which may be open to the parties to a charterparty contract to vary the common law position. For example, many types of clauses have been introduced into charterparties over the years which compensate shipowners for time spent by their vessels waiting at or off a port when laytime, under the common law, would not have commenced. Consideration is also given to breaches of contract which, by allowing shipowners a remedy in damages, provide compensation for the time that a vessel is waiting off a port when laytime would not otherwise have commenced. Commencement of laytime (laytime being the amount of time allowed for loading/discharging vessels over and above which the shipowner is invariably paid demurrage) is a subject of extreme importance since it applies to every voyage charterparty and involves large sums of money in the aggregate. In practice, it is invariably the most important factor in laytime/demurrage disputes. The subject has led to a great many court cases as well as scores of arbitrations—in fact, arbitrations on the subject continue to take place in London every year and it seems that the subject is incapable of exhaustion.

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