Ask a Spain Law Question, Get an Answer ASAP!
Dear sir, We have contracted on May 2012 C& F basis a load of bulk cement for Algeria from a big producer in Barcelona. Cargo was shipped 27/06/13 on an unseaworthy vessel with no Insurance (only EEC trips cover) and no valid statutory certificate (ie Safety construction and safety equipment withdrawn, synopsis management certificate false....), vessel gear was not certified for blk cement and has never loaded bulk cement! Vessel gear was not adapter to discharge upon berthing. N.O.R was NIL & non valid as part of the equipment gear necessary to discharge was ship on a separate vessel shilling from Turkey. This gear was mounted and welded on our vessel after vessel berthing. after 2 days vessel started unloading but break-down and pollution/spillage of Cement on sea, peer and air which made harbor authority stop vessel from discharging and vessel was sent on road for a week to attend to necessary repairs. After a week vessel berthed again but problems of breakdowns and pollution continued. After 3 weeks from Vessel arrival we managed to unload only 817 MT of the 6000 MT ordered (contract terms and condition stated self discharging vessel simultaneously on 2 tracks 1500 to 2000 MT per WWD, SHEX even if used. Demurrage if any to be paid 5 days after discharging was completed. Vessel was a general cargo built in1976 and modified in 1988 using a mechanical system to discharge grains and clinker but was not dust proof hence pollution problem. Charterer was fully aware of vessel equipment problems but accepted in view of cheap freight and signed a non Gecon registered Charter party without controlling vessel insurance or certificate. A Crew mutiny started during the 3 days of discharging attempts and delayed vessel discharging by a further week till crew change. At that time we as receiver arrested the vessel to claim losses of goods, loss of trucks immobilization during vessel incapacity to discharge earning as we could not deliver goods contracted with our own clients. After vessel arrest ship owner refused to discharge on 3 documented occasion unless we pay him vessel “demurrage”!!!!!! casing the cargo to perish as up to date we were refused access to cargo despite several attempt of mitigation with owner whom abandoned the ship and turned to charter to ask for demurrage as charter party signed with charter Total laytime combined loading and unloading while NOR on loading was already signed by charter’s agent! Purchase contract between buyer (receiver) and seller (charterer) is ruled by spanish law while freight contract is ruled by English law is arbitration best course of action and our chances as seller keeps delaying
compensation and trying to gain time. The point is this seller has loader on a private port on a vessel that had no valid statutory certificate, No valid insurance for the intended and to croown the whole picture charter knew about vessel pb befor loading!
I am an spanish attorney
Your problem is international, and there will be differents laws to be applied
The first step its to see the contracts
In there you will found the law to be applied
Its very important to know the law, because European laws gives you more rights and security
Another point to check in the contarcts its to see where do you have to demand
Ussualy international law requieres to demand in the country/place of the demanded person
Check this parts, law to be applied and the plece where you have to demand and you have done the first step
Once you now that you will have to contact and contract an attorney, or group of them, in order to defend you
I will be here if needed, thank you
DISCLAIMER: Answers from Experts on JustAnswer are not substitutes for the advice of an attorney. JustAnswer is a public forum and questions and responses are not private or confidential or protected by the attorney-client privilege. The Expert above is not your attorney, and the response above is not legal advice. You should not read this response to propose specific action or address specific circumstances, but only to give you a sense of general principles of law that might affect the situation you describe. Application of these general principles to particular circumstances must be done by a lawyer who has spoken with you in confidence, learned all relevant information, and explored various options. Before acting on these general principles, you should hire a lawyer licensed to practice law in the jurisdiction to which your question pertains.
The responses above are from individual Experts, not JustAnswer. The site and services are provided “as is”. To view the verified credential of an Expert, click on the “Verified” symbol in the Expert’s profile. This site is not for emergency questions which should be directed immediately by telephone or in-person to qualified professionals. Please carefully read the Terms of Service (last updated February 8, 2012).