find the latest legal job
Part Time Risk & Compliance Officer
Category: Other | Location: Brisbane QLD 4000
· Brisbane City · Flexible Part Time Hours
View details
Infrastructure Lawyer/SA
Category: Construction Law | Location: Sydney CBD, Inner West & Eastern Suburbs Sydney NSW
· Global elite law firm · Dedicated Infrastructure team
View details
Property Lawyer
Category: Property Law | Location: All Melbourne VIC
· 12 Month Contract · Diverse Work
View details
In-House Legal Counsel (Mid to Senior)| Regulated Markets (Energy and Gas)
Category: Generalists - In House | Location: Melbourne CBD & Inner Suburbs Melbourne VIC
· Full PD on Request · Exciting High Impact Role
View details
Family Lawyer
Category: Family Law | Location: Eastern Suburbs Melbourne VIC
· Boutique Firm · Great Reputation
View details
Aussie lawyer chairs international maritime review

Aussie lawyer chairs international maritime review

An Australian maritime lawyer is set to chair the long-awaited review of the 1989 Salvage Convention by the Comite Maritime International (CMI), a Belgium-based international NGO.The review,…

An Australian maritime lawyer is set to chair the long-awaited review of the 1989 Salvage Convention by the Comite Maritime International (CMI), a Belgium-based international NGO.

The review, which was requested by the International Salvage Union (ISU) and will take place in Buenos Aires in October, will canvass competing industry views in regards to escalating environmental issues, as well as concerns that the professional salvage industry is inadequately compensated for their environmental protection efforts.

"The ISU has called for the review on the basis that the salvage landscape has changed dramatically in the past 20 years, making the Convention out of date," said Stuart Hetherington, partner with Colin Biggers & Paisley and Chairman of the CMI's international working group and international sub-committee on the review of the 1989 Salvage Convention.

"The underlying aim of the Convention is to ensure that salvors receive appropriate rewards for protecting property and minimising environmental damage where there has been a shipping casualty. Ship and cargo owners, their insurers and governments, all recognise that adequate incentives to support a skilled and well-resourced professional salvage industry are crucial."

Hetherington said the most contentious issue was whether salvors should be entitled to an award for environmental salvage which is not limited to the value of the preserved assets.

"The salvage industry argues that the Convention does not properly reward them for protecting the environment, because the awards are generally capped at the value of the salved property and, in many cases, these assets are worth much less than the value of the work done," he said.

"And while the Convention provides scope for 'special compensation' to be awarded, the ISU points out that it is only a safety net which is limited to out-of-pocket expenses and is not geared to provide a profit."

The ISU has used the disastrous 2002 sinking of The Prestige oil tanker in Spanish waters as an example of why the Convention needs to allow salvage awards to better reflect liabilities from which ship-owners and their insurers have been spared.

In that incident, Spanish authorities prohibited any salvage from being carried out, giving rise to hundreds of millions of dollars in environmental claims.

Hetherington noted that while industry groups had negotiated alternative arrangements to address the Convention's limitations, the ISU was of the view that these were no longer adequate.

Possible outcomes of the review may include the drafting of a new Convention, or drafting a Protocol to the Convention.

Like this story? Read more:

QLS condemns actions of disgraced lawyer as ‘stain on the profession’

NSW proposes big justice reforms to target risk of reoffending

The legal budget breakdown 2017

Aussie lawyer chairs international maritime review
lawyersweekly logo
Promoted content
Recommended by Spike Native Network
more from lawyers weekly
Nov 17 2017
It's time for politicians to commit to eradicating domestic violence
The national shame of domestic violence cannot be left unaddressed, writes Christine Smyth. ...
Nov 16 2017
From lawyer in law firm to senior governance professional
Promoted by Governance Institute of Australia As a law graduate, Kate Griffiths never imagined...
marriage equality
Nov 16 2017
Legislation the next hurdle for marriage equality
Lawyers have underscored the importance of ensuring same-sex marriage legislation does not limit ant...
Allens managing partner Richard Spurio, image courtesy Allens' website
Jun 21 2017
Promo season at Allens
A group of lawyers at Allens have received promotions across its PNG and Australian offices. ...
May 11 2017
Partner exits for in-house role
A Victorian lawyer has left the partnership of a national firm to start a new gig with state governm...
Esteban Gomez
May 11 2017
National firm recruits ‘major asset’
A national law firm has announced it has appointed a new corporate partner who brings over 15 years'...
Nicole Rich
May 16 2017
Access to justice for young transgender Australians
Reform is looming for the process that young transgender Australians and their families must current...
Geoff Roberson
May 11 2017
The lighter side of the law: when law and comedy collide
On the face of it, there doesn’t seem to be much that is amusing about the law, writes Geoff Rober...
May 10 2017
Advocate’s immunity – without fear or without favour but not both
On 29 March 2017, the High Court handed down its decision in David Kendirjian v Eugene Lepore & ...