What Are The Common Maritime Disputes And Resolution in the UAE?

Posted by Al Rowaad Advocates & Legal Consultants on December 15th, 2022

The law which regulates the maritime law in the United Arab Emirates is the Federal Law No. 26 of 1981 (Maritime Code).

The provisions of the Maritime Code are to be construed which will promote domestic and foreign trade of the country and establish and develop an efficient and modern fleet of vessels for the country, to ensure economic security and growth of the country and its people. 

Maritime Disputes 

Disputes in the maritime sector are common and could arise out of breach of the terms of the contract, loss or damage occurred to the goods in the cargo, or collision of vessels, amongst others. 

One of the options available to a party who has suffered a maritime loss, such as damage by collision, loss or damage to the goods, salvage, personal injuries caused by the vessel, salaries of the crew personnel, maritime mortgage, or disputes related to the ownership of a vessel, may apply for the arrest of the vessel under Article 115 of the Maritime Code. 

Arrest of the Vessel

Under Article 115 of the Maritime Code, a vessel can only be arrested in satisfaction in satisfaction of a “maritime debt”. A maritime debt has been defined under the Maritime Code, pursuant to Article 115/2 as follows. 

A claim in respect of a right arising out of any the following causes:

  • Damage caused by the vessel by reason of a collision or otherwise
  • Loss of life or personal injuries occasioned by the vessel and arising out of the use thereof.
  • Assistance and salvage.
  • Contracts relating to the use or exploitation of the vessel under a charter party or otherwise
  • Contracts relating to the carriage of goods under a charter party, bill of lading, or other documents
  • Loss of or damage to goods or chattels being carried on board the vessel
  • General average.
  • Towage or pilotage of the vessel.
  • Supplies of products or equipment necessary for the utilization or maintenance of the vessel, in whichever place the supply is made.
  • Construction, repair or fitting out of the vessel, and costs of it being in dock.
  • Sums expended by the master, shippers, charterers or agents on account of the vessel or on  account of the owner thereof
  • Wages of the master, officers and crew, and other persons working on board the vessel under a contract of maritime employment
  • A dispute as to the ownership of the vessel
  • A dispute in connection with the co-ownership of the vessel, or with the possession or use thereof, or with the right to the profits arising out of the use thereof.
  • A maritime mortgage

How to File for a Ship Arrest?

The application for ship arrest is to be filed with the civil court having jurisdiction. The interested party is required to provide a power of attorney signed by it in favor of a UAE local advocate, and the power of attorney must be signed before a notary public in the UAE. For a foreign company, the power of attorney must be fully legalized and translated into Arabic.

Setting Aside an Order for Arrest

According to Article 118/2 of the Maritime Code, an order of arrest can be cancelled by the competent court upon presentation of a guarantee or other security which is sufficient to satisfy the debt. It should be noted that an order for arrest will no be cancelled if the maritime debts relate to the dispute as to ownership, co-ownership, possession, use or right to profits arising out of the use of the vessel.

URL: https://www.alrowaad.ae/

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Al Rowaad Advocates & Legal Consultants
Joined: February 3rd, 2021
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