Shipping litigation

Stephenson Harwood has one of the world's leading shipping practices. We offer comprehensive, specialist advice on resolving a wide range of disputes in the shipping industry. All our lawyers take special pride in working hard to give you clear, commercial and reliable advice.
  • Profile
  • Experience
  • Key contacts
Our team has the specialist experience to understand your business needs and the capacity to handle all areas of shipping litigation work.  Whatever the type of vessel, cargo or commodity, we will protect your interests and work with you to provide the solution you require.

From our offices in London, Dubai, Hong Kong, Singapore, Shanghai and Seoul we frequently act in high profile disputes involving complex legal and commercial problems.  We often have to advise on cross-border and jurisdictional disputes which has resulted in a considerable pool of experience relating to the majority of important maritime jurisdictions.

We service clients throughout the world, and our multinational team includes specialist lawyers fluent in many languages.

We can help you with:

  • arbitration and mediation
  • bills of lading
  • bunker disputes
  • cargo loss and damage
  • casualties
  • charterparties
  • CMR
  • competition law
  • contracts of affreightment
  • e-commerce and electronic bills of lading
  • fires and explosions
  • general average disputes
  • insurance
  • international trade and commodities
  • maritime fraud investigation and litigation
  • oil and gas, chemical products
  • P&I and defence work
  • personal injury
  • port agency and terminal contracts
  • ship sale and purchase disputes
  • unsafe port and berth disputes
  • vessel sharing, slot charter and pooling agreements.

Praised as 'utterly committed to the cause in heavyweight commercial litigation' 

The Legal 500 UK 2021

Fiona Trust litigation

Fiona Trust - advising the successful parties against claims totalling US$1 billion in respect of alleged bribery in the Fiona Trust litigation.

LNG cargoes

Advising on potential claims relating to surrender of bills of lading for LNG cargoes and LOU for discharge of LNG.

Purchase dispute

Representing ship owners in a successful defence of a claim before the English court relating to the purchase of two VLCCs for conversion into production facilities.

New build dispute

Assisting shipyard in the successful defence of a series of claims relating to purported cancellation by ship owners due to delay.

LNG FPSO project offshore Israel

Acting for Daewoo Shipbuilding & Marine Engineering Co., Ltd in relation to various disputes concerning a LNG FPSO project offshore Israel for the realisation and export of LNG from Israel. Total project value in excess of US$10 billion.

Cargo damage

Advising owners following damage to a cargo of steel coils, including claims of fraudulent bills of lading, deviation and loss of profits.

Safe loading and carriage of goods

Acting for owner in a dispute relating to the safety of a concentrates cargo and permitted loading configurations for the vessel.

Detention of the vessel

Advising underwriters on a claim for constructive total loss following the detention of the vessel in Kuwait pending provision of security by owners. We arranged for a team in Kuwait to liaise with the local authorities, which led to the expedited release of the vessel.

Unsafe port claim

Advising in relation to a grounding in the Orinoco river leading to a US$20 million unsafe port claim with arbitration proceedings in London and New York.

Rovine Chandrasekera Partner

T:  +44 7825 943 076 +971 55 899 3951
M:  Email Rovine | Vcard Office:  Dubai, London


Michael Kim Office managing partner

T:  + 82 2 6138 4888
M:  + 82 10 2005 1690 Email Michael | Vcard Office:  Seoul


Daryll Ng Managing partner at Virtus Law

T:  +65 6835 8656
M:  Email Daryll | Vcard Office:  Singapore


Andrew Rigden Green Partner

T:  +852 2533 2761
M:  +852 6013 2520 Email Andrew | Vcard Office:  Hong Kong

Latest news & insights

01 Apr 2021

From News

Dry shipping specialist Kirsty MacHardy joins Stephenson Harwood as partner

Law firm Stephenson Harwood LLP has strengthened its marine and international trade practice with the addition of dry shipping specialist Kirsty MacHardy. She joins as..


15 May 2019

From News

Stephenson Harwood secures victory for Atlantic Marine & Aviation LLP

Law firm Stephenson Harwood LLP has advised Atlantic Marine & Aviation LLP (Atlantic) in its successful claim against Boskalis Offshore Marine Contracting BV (Boskalis..


11 Dec 2018

From Insights

Who bears the burden in cargo claims?

Many would assume that the question of where the burden of proof lies would be established under English law, particularly in the oft-litigated area of Hague Rules car..


12 Dec 2017

From News

Stephenson Harwood named 'Transport Law Firm of the Year'

Law firm Stephenson Harwood LLP has been named 'Transport Law Firm of the Year' at the Legal 500 UK Awards 2018.


25 Oct 2017

From News

Stephenson Harwood secures Supreme Court victory in landmark general average case

Law firm Stephenson Harwood LLP has represented the successful shipowners, in a claim arising from the seizure of the MV Longchamp by Somali pirates.


01 Mar 2017

From Insights

Does fraud always “unravel all”?

The English High Court considers the enforceability of a Chinese arbitration award relating to a sale transaction that was tainted by fraud.


11 May 2016

From Insights

The "GLOBAL SANTOSH" - off-hire during arrest?

In this alert, we report on the Supreme Court decision in NYK Bulkship (Atlantic) NV v Cargill International SA [2016] UKSC 20.


17 Feb 2016

From News

Stephenson Harwood lawyers named exclusive winners for Shipping & Transport UK and Intellectual Property UK at Client Choice Awards 2016

Stephenson Harwood partners Max Lemanski and Eifion Morris were named winners at the Client Choice Award 2016 for the Shipping & Transport category for the United Kin..


02 Mar 2015

From Insights

Media coverage: Le journal de la Marine Marchan - L'admissibilité de la rançon dans l'avarie commune

Ezio Dal Maso comments on the "Longchamp" case regarding the contribution in general average to expenses incurred as a result of a vessel seizure by Somali pirates.


06 Feb 2014

From News

Stephenson Harwood hires new Korea shipping partner

International law firm Stephenson Harwood has appointed Michael Kim as a partner in the marine and international trade practice.


27 Aug 2013

From Insights

Media coverage: Il Diritto Marittimo

Ezio Dal Maso discusses a mortgagee's rights in the Italian publication, Il Diritto Marittimo, 2013. [In Italian]


© Stephenson Harwood LLP 2016. Any reference to Stephenson Harwood in this document means Stephenson Harwood LLP and/or its affiliated undertakings. Any reference to a partner is used to refer to a member of Stephenson Harwood LLP.