THE SEASPAN GROUSE: SEASPAN HOLDCO 1 LTD VS MARE TRAVELLER SCHIFFAHRTS GMBH [2019] ZASCA

South Africa
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This matter covers a raft of litigation before the High Courts in Cape Town and Durban, as well as before the Supreme Court of Appeal. It arises from the financial collapse of Hanjin Shipping in 2017 which was cause célèbre in the market and sent shockwaves through the industry. The nub of the SA litigation was the legal validity of issuing “protective” writs of arrest to preserve claims in rem against a ship notwithstanding a later change of ownership of Hanjin controlled vessels. The team successfully represented the owners in the Supreme Court of Appeal in having the writs set aside, making new law in the process. The judgment will have an impact on maritime creditors, ship owners and insurers alike. Our related newsflash can be found here.

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