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International Law

Jun. 17, 2024

Ocean-bound cargo requires careful documentation

Shippers and carriers may face huge losses or disputes if they neglect or omit the details of their contracts, such as the value, nature and package of the goods, the scope and limits of liability, and the extension of the Carriage of Goods by Sea Act to off-vessel periods.

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Every day, ships ply our oceans laden with everything from laxatives to luxury goods. Shippers entrust their livelihoods to the whims of nature and to human negligence. When their items are lost, damaged or destroyed, they expect someone to pay the price.

But that may be wishful thinking. If, when and who ultimately pays for those losses could be dictated by laws dating back more than a century. The transport of goods via ocean-bound vessel...

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