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The carriage of Goods by Sea Conventions – A comparative study of Seaworthiness and the list of exclusions

Bengtsson, Sofie (2010) JURM01 20101
Department of Law
Abstract
In September 2009, the new convention concerning carriage of goods by sea opened for signing in Rotterdam. If the convention succeeds in what it sets out to do, harmonising the carriage of goods by sea regulations throughout the world, the almost a century old regime of the Hague Rules will be discarded. These conventions, together with the Hague-Visby Rules and the Hamburg Rules, regulate the liability in case of cargo damage, and what the carrier and the shipper respectively will be paying for. This thesis looks at the liability regime for the carrier under the present conventions, which are The Hague, The Hague-Visby Rules and The Hamburg Rules to some extent, and what would change if the new Rotterdam Rules will enter into force and be... (More)
In September 2009, the new convention concerning carriage of goods by sea opened for signing in Rotterdam. If the convention succeeds in what it sets out to do, harmonising the carriage of goods by sea regulations throughout the world, the almost a century old regime of the Hague Rules will be discarded. These conventions, together with the Hague-Visby Rules and the Hamburg Rules, regulate the liability in case of cargo damage, and what the carrier and the shipper respectively will be paying for. This thesis looks at the liability regime for the carrier under the present conventions, which are The Hague, The Hague-Visby Rules and The Hamburg Rules to some extent, and what would change if the new Rotterdam Rules will enter into force and be ratified by the majority of maritime nations. The focus is on the list of exceptions that was introduced in the Hague Rules, but actually comes from the American Harter Act. The compromise that leads up to first the Harter act, and then the Hague Rules has two basic components. The carrier was relieved of an absolute obligation of seaworthiness, that was the long-standing practice and this was instead replaced with a duty of exercising due diligence to make the ship seaworthy. The shippers on the other hand got the advantage of a restriction for the carrier to use exculpating clauses in the bill of lading. With The Hague Rules came a minimum liability for the carrier that could not be contracted out of. The Hague Rules were amended and became the Hague-Visby Rules, but on the liability side, there were no greater changes. In 1992, the Hamburg Rules entered into force. However, they are today regarded as a failure due to the lack of ratifications by the traditional maritime states, and are rarely used. The Hamburg Rules was drafted in a very different way than The Hague and Hague-Visby when it comes to the basis of the carrier’s liability and the concepts of seaworthiness and due diligence was not used at all. The new Rotterdam Rules have now gone back to the wording used in The Hague and Hague-Visby with some changes made. There is a general obligation to care for the cargo. The article concerning exercising due diligence to make the vessel seaworthy is kept the same apart from the new convention will require this obligation to be carried out during the voyage as well, instead of before and at the commencement of it. The exception of error in navigation or management it also removed from the new convention and the burden of proof has been modified. It is now clearly stated in the articles which party needs to prove what. The Vallescura rule has been abolished in favour of giving the courts the right to divide the loss between the parties in case of concurrent causes of the loss, damage or delay. Under the Rotterdam Rules the carrier will be liable more frequently, but the changes in the burden of proof will increase the amount of cases where the carrier is only partly liable, as the burden of proving the extent of the loss due to a concurrent cause in no longer on the carrier. (Less)
Abstract (Swedish)
I September 2009 öppnade den nya konventionen om godsbefordran till sjöss för signering i Rotterdam. Om den nya konventionen lyckas i det den har intention att göra, vilket är att harmonisera reglerna om godsbefordran till sjöss, kommer den nästan hundra år gammal regimen Haag reglerna att försvinna. Dessa konventioner reglerar tillsammans med Haag-Visby och Hamburg reglerna ansvaret för skada på lasten och vad transportören respektive avlastare kommer att betala för. Denna avhandling undersöker ansvarsreglerna för transportören under de nuvarande konventionerna som är Haag, Haag-Visby reglerna, även Hamburg reglerna till viss utsträckning, och vad som kommer att förändras om de nya Rotterdam reglerna träder i kraft och blir ratificerade... (More)
I September 2009 öppnade den nya konventionen om godsbefordran till sjöss för signering i Rotterdam. Om den nya konventionen lyckas i det den har intention att göra, vilket är att harmonisera reglerna om godsbefordran till sjöss, kommer den nästan hundra år gammal regimen Haag reglerna att försvinna. Dessa konventioner reglerar tillsammans med Haag-Visby och Hamburg reglerna ansvaret för skada på lasten och vad transportören respektive avlastare kommer att betala för. Denna avhandling undersöker ansvarsreglerna för transportören under de nuvarande konventionerna som är Haag, Haag-Visby reglerna, även Hamburg reglerna till viss utsträckning, och vad som kommer att förändras om de nya Rotterdam reglerna träder i kraft och blir ratificerade av en majoritet av de traditionella sjöfartsnationerna. Fokus ligger på listan av undantag som var introducerad in Haag reglerna men som faktiskt har sitt ursprung i den amerikanska Harter Act. Kompromissen som ledde fram till först Harter Act och sedan även Haag reglerna har två grundläggande element. Transportören blev befriad från ett strikt ansvar för ett sjövärdigt fartyg som var ett vedertaget krav för branschen, och istället skulle han visa tillbörlig omsorg för att göra fartyget sjövärdigt. Till avlastarens fördel blev möjligheterna för transportören att avtala bort sitt ansvar genom klausuler i konossementet begränsat. Haag reglerna satte för första gången upp minimikrav och ansvarsregler för transportören som inte kunde begränsas genom avtal. Haagreglerna blev föremål för ändringar och blev då Haag-Visby reglerna, men bestämmelserna angående transportörens ansvar förblev i stort sätt oförändrade. 1992 trädde Hamburg reglerna i kraft, men de blev aldrig ratificerade av några av de större sjöfartsnationerna, och används sällan. Hamburg reglerna blev avfattade på ett sätt som skiljer sig väsentligt från Haag och Haag-Visby, sjövärdighet och tillbörlig omsorg var uttryck som inte användes i denna konvention. De nya Rotterdam reglerna har återgått till den formulering som användes i Haag och Haag-Visby men med några ändringar Det generella ansvaret för att vårda godset finns kvar. Artikeln som reglerar sjövärdighet och tillbörlig omsorg är formulerad på samma vis som i Haag och Haag-Visby bortsett från att den nya konventionen kräver att denna omsorg utövar under hela resan, och inte bara innan och vid resans påbörjande. Undantaget fel eller försummelse av besättningen i navigering eller handhavande av fartyget finns inte med i den nya konventionen och reglerna angående bevisbördan har blivit justerade. Det är nu klart uttryckt i artiklarna vem om ska bevisa vad och Vallescura regeln har blivit borttagen. Istället får nu domstolen rätten att fördela ansvaret för skada, förlust eller förseningar mellan parterna när det är flera bidragande orsaker varav en eller flera inte är transportörens ansvar. Under de nya Rotterdam reglerna kommer transportören inte att kunna undvika ansvar i samma utsträckning som tidigare, men den justering i bevisbördan som har gjorts kommer öka antalet fall som transportören och avlastaren delar ansvaret eftersom transportören inte längre har bevisbördan för i vilken utsträckning skadan inte orsakades av fel eller försummelse av transportören själv. (Less)
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author
Bengtsson, Sofie
supervisor
organization
course
JURM01 20101
year
type
H3 - Professional qualifications (4 Years - )
subject
keywords
Internationell privaträtt, Sjörätt
language
English
id
1713339
date added to LUP
2010-11-04 15:58:56
date last changed
2010-11-04 15:58:56
@misc{1713339,
  abstract     = {In September 2009, the new convention concerning carriage of goods by sea opened for signing in Rotterdam. If the convention succeeds in what it sets out to do, harmonising the carriage of goods by sea regulations throughout the world, the almost a century old regime of the Hague Rules will be discarded. These conventions, together with the Hague-Visby Rules and the Hamburg Rules, regulate the liability in case of cargo damage, and what the carrier and the shipper respectively will be paying for. This thesis looks at the liability regime for the carrier under the present conventions, which are The Hague, The Hague-Visby Rules and The Hamburg Rules to some extent, and what would change if the new Rotterdam Rules will enter into force and be ratified by the majority of maritime nations. The focus is on the list of exceptions that was introduced in the Hague Rules, but actually comes from the American Harter Act. The compromise that leads up to first the Harter act, and then the Hague Rules has two basic components. The carrier was relieved of an absolute obligation of seaworthiness, that was the long-standing practice and this was instead replaced with a duty of exercising due diligence to make the ship seaworthy. The shippers on the other hand got the advantage of a restriction for the carrier to use exculpating clauses in the bill of lading. With The Hague Rules came a minimum liability for the carrier that could not be contracted out of. The Hague Rules were amended and became the Hague-Visby Rules, but on the liability side, there were no greater changes. In 1992, the Hamburg Rules entered into force. However, they are today regarded as a failure due to the lack of ratifications by the traditional maritime states, and are rarely used. The Hamburg Rules was drafted in a very different way than The Hague and Hague-Visby when it comes to the basis of the carrier’s liability and the concepts of seaworthiness and due diligence was not used at all. The new Rotterdam Rules have now gone back to the wording used in The Hague and Hague-Visby with some changes made. There is a general obligation to care for the cargo. The article concerning exercising due diligence to make the vessel seaworthy is kept the same apart from the new convention will require this obligation to be carried out during the voyage as well, instead of before and at the commencement of it. The exception of error in navigation or management it also removed from the new convention and the burden of proof has been modified. It is now clearly stated in the articles which party needs to prove what. The Vallescura rule has been abolished in favour of giving the courts the right to divide the loss between the parties in case of concurrent causes of the loss, damage or delay. Under the Rotterdam Rules the carrier will be liable more frequently, but the changes in the burden of proof will increase the amount of cases where the carrier is only partly liable, as the burden of proving the extent of the loss due to a concurrent cause in no longer on the carrier.},
  author       = {Bengtsson, Sofie},
  keyword      = {Internationell privaträtt,Sjörätt},
  language     = {eng},
  note         = {Student Paper},
  title        = {The carriage of Goods by Sea Conventions – A comparative study of Seaworthiness and the list of exclusions},
  year         = {2010},
}