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14 Oct 2021

Demurrage time bar—completion of discharge and applicable time zone (Euronav NV v Repsol Trading SA)

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Nikki Chu has written a case analysis on Euronav NV v. Repsol Trading SA concerning demurrage time bars [2021] EWHC 2565 (Comm). This article was first published by Lexis®PSL on 10 October 2021.

The crucial issue considered was whether the claimant owners’ claim for demurrage from the defendant charterers was time barred under clause 15(3) of the amended Shellvoy 6 form requiring notification of the demurrage claim ‘within 30 days after completion of discharge’, failing which the owners’ claim would be time barred. The parties disagreed on which time zone should be used to determine the date of completion of discharge under clause 15(3). Should the time zone be based on: (a) the place of discharge (California), (b) where owners/charterers were based when they sent or received the notice (Belgium/Spain), or (c) the governing law of the charterparty (England)? It was held that the date for completion of discharge was to be determined according to the applicable time zone in the place where discharge occurred. The demurrage notice was therefore served out of time and the owners’ demurrage claim was time barred. The judgment also contains useful general propositions when computing contractual periods of time, which the parties agreed were not controversial, but did not determine the question of which time zone should apply when allocating an event to a particular calendar day (see paras [25] and [26] of the judgment).

Nikki's case analysis can be downloaded here.

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Nikki Chu

Nikki Chu
Senior associate

T:  +44 20 7809 2631 M:  +44 7739 188268 Email Nikki | Vcard Office:  London

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