The present work is dedicated to the problem of cargo liability of P&I Clubs. The main idea is to examine the rules by which P&I Clubs are guided when providing the cover for cargo damages. Thus, through such examination I am trying to present P&I insurers’ legal field of action.
Generally P&I insurance provides cover for cargo, more precisely, for liability related to cargo, when it is damaged, lost, delayed or delivered with shortage. On the Thesis’s pages we are taking a closer look at conditions under which the cover is provided, will inquire into background and rational behind them, will pick out and outline the common principles of the conditions of different P&I clubs, will emphasize the essential differences (if any) between these conditions, analyze exclusions from standard rules of cover, examine real situations and cases kindly provided by practicing actors.
For practical reasons the present Thesis is based on Scandinavian experience. So, it means that I am going to examine and compare Rules of three Scandinavian P&I Clubs: Norwegian Assuranceforeningen Gard – gjensidig, Assuranceforeningen Skuld (Gjensidig) and Sveriges Ångfartygs Assurans Förening (The Swedish Club) in Sweden. For the sake of consistency we will take Gard’s Rule 34 – Cargo Liablity – as a sample model and follow the wording of this Rule while referring to and making parallels with Skuld’s and The Swedish Club’s Rules whenever needed.
In addition to the core line in this Thesis I will touch upon some issues inevitably related to the carriage of goods in general and the carriage of goods by sea in particular, such as: international rules and regimes for cargo liability (e.g.: international conventions), contracts of affreightment (e.g.: charterparties), documents that regulate such carriages (e.g.: Bills of Lading), some actual and topical problems of today existing in this area etc. We will not deepen much and consider these issues too thoroughly as it may lead us far outside the core of the Thesis, but a quick consideration and discussion of the mentioned points is important in order to present the background for P&I clubs’ Rules where they actually stem from and to better understand their implication.
Besides the theoretical literature I am going to use some materials from practice to illustrate the application of P&I clubs’ rules related to liability for cargo damage in real situations. These materials are real cases or claims which have been handled by practitioners and they show circumstances which constitute basis for declining the P&I cover by the insurer due to breach of the contractual obligations, non-conformity with clubs’ rules, violation of conventional terms etc.