JJR Abogados updates

Criminal liability for spills that cause damage to hydro-biological resources
JJR Abogados
  • Shipping & Transport
  • Chile
  • November 16 2016

A recent Valparaiso Court of Appeal decision restricts the application of criminal liability for spills that cause damage to hydro-biological resources to cases associated with malicious acts. Although the first-instance court held that the provision covered negligence, as the introduction of polluting agents could be the result of an accident, the Valparaiso Court of Appeal reversed that decision and held that, under the Constitution, no law establishes penalties if the conduct is not expressly described therein.

Recent developments on civil liability derived from pollution claims
JJR Abogados
  • Shipping & Transport
  • Chile
  • July 20 2016

Chile is a party to the 1992 Civil Liability Convention. Approval of the amendments to the limitation amounts contained in the convention has been a positive step towards harmonisation with the international community. However, the adoption of the 1992 Fund Convention and the Supplementary Fund Protocol continue to be important missing parts of the international compensation regime, exposing Chile to the pollution contingency above its 89.7 million special drawing rights cap.

Maritime enquiries in case of accidents or losses
JJR Abogados
  • Shipping & Transport
  • Chile
  • October 14 2015

The Maritime Authority is authorised to initiate a maritime enquiry into accidents and losses involving vessels or persons in Chilean territorial waters, channels, lakes or navigable rivers to determine the causes and the parties responsible. When civil liability arising from a collision is sought at trial, the causes set out in the Maritime Authority's resolution are deemed to be true, unless proven otherwise.

Courts accept letter of undertaking as sufficient guarantee in arrest of vessel
JJR Abogados
  • Shipping & Transport
  • Chile
  • February 25 2015

There are no specific regulations in Chile regarding the nature of security that may be requested by claimants on the arrest of a vessel. Protection and indemnity insurance club letters of undertaking were previously accepted only if agreed by the arrest petitioner. However, in a recent case the court hearing the arrest accepted a letter of undertaking with no prior approval from the arrest petitioner.

Court confirms arbitral tribunals' competence in maritime disputes
JJR Abogados
  • Shipping & Transport
  • Chile
  • May 28 2014

Article 1203 of the Commerce Code establishes that maritime disputes must be resolved through arbitral proceedings. However, some parties seek to override this mandatory provision. The Valparaiso Court of Appeal recently confirmed that shipping disputes must go through arbitration and held that an ordinary court had no competence to hear a shipping dispute.

Tribunal rules on request to abrogate immunity for shipping conferences
JJR Abogados
  • Shipping & Transport
  • Chile
  • November 06 2013

The Tribunal for the Defence of Free Competition has recently ruled on a request that the Merchant Navy Law be modified to annul a competition exemption enjoyed by shipping conferences, pool agreements and consortiums. The tribunal ruled that the requested abrogation of the law is unnecessary, provided that antitrust authorities can still investigate and punish conduct that may attempt to impede free competition.

New insurance law brings changes for shipping industry
JJR Abogados
  • Shipping & Transport
  • Chile
  • July 24 2013

A new law was recently enacted to replace the provisions on general and non-marine insurance contained in the Code of Commerce, so that Chilean insurance law could be updated in line with current trends and market practice. The law contains a number of amendments to the existing marine insurance provisions, all of which have been in force since 1988.

Tribunal considers request to abrogate immunity for shipping conferences
JJR Abogados
  • Shipping & Transport
  • Chile
  • February 20 2013

The Tribunal for the Defence of Free Competition is in the process of reviewing a request from the National Economic Office of the Public Prosecutor that the Merchant Navy Law be modified, annulling a competition exemption enjoyed by shipping conferences, pool agreements and consortiums. The proposed amendment aims to harmonise the industry's regulations with the principles of free competition.

Free competition? Court examines rules and regulations for port tender
JJR Abogados
  • Shipping & Transport
  • Chile
  • December 19 2012

Mooring facilities in the Valparaiso region are subject to a number of rules and restrictions in order to ensure that free competition is maintained. A recent decision of the Court for the Defence of Free Competition has detailed the conditions that should apply in relation to the tender for Terminal 2 at Valparaiso port, in order to make the process more flexible and successful.

Court confirms competence of arbitration tribunals for maritime disputes
JJR Abogados
  • Shipping & Transport
  • Chile
  • September 19 2012

Article 1203 of the Commercial Code establishes the general principle that the resolution of any maritime dispute, including those relating to marine insurance, is subject to arbitration. However, in certain cases the ordinary civil courts may hear maritime disputes. The Supreme Court of Justice has recently confirmed the correct interpretation criteria and held that mandatory arbitration applies for shipping disputes.

Changes to casino regulations favour foreign vessels
JJR Abogados
  • Shipping & Transport
  • Chile
  • June 06 2012

In 2011 the government promoted a draft amendment of the regulation that applies to casinos based on cruise vessels, in order to increase economic competitiveness in this market and to bring Chile into line with other significant economic activities. However, the enacted Casino Law, in all matters regarding cruise vessels, kept only partially to the draft amendment.

Implications of insurance law changes for the shipping industry
JJR Abogados
  • Shipping & Transport
  • Chile
  • February 29 2012

The Chamber of Deputies of the Chilean National Congress has recently approved a bill to replace the provisions on general and non-marine insurance. Under the bill, in addition to relating directly to ships, marine insurance will now apply to facilities and machinery used for loading, unloading and stevedoring operations, and will cover other goods or assets that the parties consider to be exposed to marine risks.

Forthcoming changes to casino regulations for cruise vessels
JJR Abogados
  • Shipping & Transport
  • Chile
  • October 05 2011

The number of cruise vessels calling at Chilean ports has decreased dramatically since 2008, a trend partly caused by the current prohibition on the functioning of game casinos in territorial waters. However, under a proposed draft amendment to the Casinos Law, the excessively onerous requirements currently in force for the exploitation of casino games in cruising vessels will be at least partially eliminated.

Potential regulatory changes in the cabotage trade
JJR Abogados
  • Shipping & Transport
  • Chile
  • June 22 2011

Under the Merchant Navy Law, only Chilean vessels are permitted to provide maritime or fluvial transport services (of cargo or passengers) within the national territory or in the exclusive economic zone. Under a recent modification proposal, foreign vessels will now be permitted to undertake cabotage, subject to restrictions. Local shipping companies fear that this may result in potential loss of labour for Chilean crews.

Courts offer interim measures of protection for shipping disputes arbitrated abroad
JJR Abogados
  • Shipping & Transport
  • Chile
  • December 01 2010

A Santiago City court has confirmed the court's jurisdiction to grant interim protection measures in connection with ongoing arbitral proceedings conducted in New York. This was the first time that this criterion had been tested in the context of international arbitration proceedings relating to a shipping dispute.

Clarification given on court jurisdiction to handle constitution of limitation fund
JJR Abogados
  • Shipping & Transport
  • Chile
  • June 16 2010

A minister of a Chilean court of appeal recently issued a first instance judgment confirming the court's jurisdiction to handle proceedings relating to the constitution of a limitation fund. The proceedings were commenced by a Chilean owner in regard to alleged pollution liability arising from a collision with a foreign vessel that resulted in spilled bunkers.

Enforcing a foreign arbitral award under Chilean law: arrest of a vessel
JJR Abogados
  • Shipping & Transport
  • Chile
  • February 03 2010

It is well known that arbitration clauses are the general rule when dealing with bills of lading, time or voyage charters or contracts of affreightment. Unfortunately, the parties to these agreements are not always aware of the real scope of these clauses and the steps required to enforce an arbitral award, particularly when the enforcement is requested in a different jurisdiction to that which resolved the dispute.

Regulation to Expedite Container Recovery Issued
JJR Abogados
  • Shipping & Transport
  • Chile
  • September 16 2009

The Customs Authority recently issued Resolution 4730/2009, which amended Chapter III of the Compendium of Customs Regulations. The deconsolidation of a container can now be requested whenever the goods cannot be cleared during or after the legal storage period, or whenever the dispatch has been suspended. It is hoped that these changes will expedite the turnaround time for container use.

Court of Appeal Confirms that Notice of Arrival of Goods is Not a Carrier's Duty
JJR Abogados
  • Shipping & Transport
  • Chile
  • February 25 2009

The Iquique Court of Appeal recently issued a second instance judgment confirming a recent arbitration award which held that in Chile, the carrier and its agents and servants are not liable for failure to notify the consignee of the arrival of the vessel and goods.

Notice of Arrival of Goods - Not a Carrier's Duty
JJR Abogados
  • Shipping & Transport
  • Chile
  • October 08 2008

A recently issued first instance arbitration award has confirmed that in Chile, a carrier and its agents and servants are not liable for failure to notify the consignee of the arrival of the vessel and goods. Any previous notices given by the carrier to the consignee do not constitute a binding practice and thus do not oblige the carrier or its agents and servants to do the same every time.

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