Admiralty and Maritime

Prior to the establishment of a local Ship's Registry in 1987, the Firm's emphasis was on admiralty litigation arising out of casualties within local waters, claims in respect of which the local courts exercised a jurisdiction in rem (including vessel arrests), claims arising out of the carriage of goods and the various commercial matters attendant on the representation of international shipping operators in Trinidad and Tobago. The Firm's traditional practice in admiralty litigation remains strong and active.

The Firm also represented local interests before the legislative committee which was involved in drafting what ultimately became the Shipping Act, 1987. Upon the establishment of a local registry by that Act, the Firm expanded that expertise and now advises on all aspects of registration, mortgaging and licensing of vessels locally. It also advises on a host of regulatory issues including liability for marine pollution (including with respect to oil spills), statutory limits on liability and other regulatory requirements imposed by the Shipping Act, 1987 and other statutes.

From a commercial perspective, the Firm also regularly prepares and advises on shipping contracts including various species of charter-party (including bareboat, time and voyage charter-parties), contracts for the construction of vessels, sale of vessels, bunkering and sundry arrangements. The Firm also advises shipping concerns seeking to carry on business in Trinidad and Tobago on general commercial and tax issues and has advised and assisted a major worldwide shipping concern in establishing the first ever Trinidad and Tobago free zone trans-shipment area.

Clients of the Firm include P & I Clubs, international shipping lines, financial and lending institutions and local shipping agents. It also acts as the local attorneys of clients of leading international admiralty firms.

Jeffery Herrera, Partner | Mark James Morgan, Partner

Photograph courtesy Oldendorff Carriers Trinidad and Tobago Limited