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Court grants owners’ S.69 appeal on point of law with implications relating to war risks and general average

Herculito Maritime Ltd and Others v Gunvor International BV and Others (the "POLAR") [2020] EWHC 3318 (Comm)

In this recent arbitration appeal with implications for owners, charterers and bill of lading holders, the High Court considered whether owners were prevented from recovering from cargo interests in General Average (GA) due to provisions in the charterparty allocating liability for additional insurance premiums. Cargo interests argued that those provisions were incorporated into the bills of lading and, therefore, that in an extension to the principles in The Evia (No 2) and The Ocean Victory, they formed a "complete code" or "insurance-based solution" as between owners and bill of lading holders which prevented owners from recovering from cargo interests in GA in the event of loss caused by covered risks. The Court disagreed and upheld the owners' right to recover.

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