Nigerian Maritime Law Association


Our law Firm is privileged to be a major contributor to the shipping practice in Nigeria, both commercially and in dispute resolution, particularly in promoting shipping in Nigeria. Our Firm was particularly instrumental in the review of the Cabotage Bill before it was passed into an Act of the National Assembly, and the Bill on Piracy and Unlawful Acts and Other Related Offences Bill, sponsored by the Nigerian Maritime Administration and Safety Agency (NIMASA).

We combine our experience in this area with that in Commercial law and Corporate Governance and Business Advisory, to give the best and viable advice to our clients. Our clients in this field include ship-owners and operators, government authorities, financial institutions and port owners & operators.
Our experience in this field includes:-

• Representing a Federal Government Agency in a renowned case involving the construction of several provisions of shipping and oil & gas laws on levies and surcharges prescribed under these relevant laws.

• Representing a port concessionaire in a landmark case upholding our novel argument that the limitation period to file a suit does not run when a suit is pending between the parties.

• Advising and acting as advocate for a multinational oil and gas company in respect of the liability limits for ship-owners under Nigerian law, for damage done by its ship.

• Advising and acting as advocate for a leading Fortune 500 multinational oil and gas company for a ship to ship collision, resulting in environmental pollution.

• Representing an international oil and gas producing and exporting company in a Multi-million US Dollar collision damage to its pipelines by a drilling rig.

• Procuring and renewing Ministerial waivers and licences for foreign-owned ships for Cabotage trade in Nigeria; and advising on compliance with the shipping laws in Nigeria.

• Representing shipping companies in dispute resolution, across the hierarchy in courts in Nigeria.

• Judicial arrests and detention of ships including drilling rigs and cargo as pre-judgment securities for the satisfaction of final Judgments.

• Protection of ships and cargo interests from arrests and repossession of ships; and the provision of securities and release of arrested ships or cargo from judicial arrests and detention.

• Collision, salvage, towage agreements & actions, harbour & port operations, marine & oil pollution claims and liabilities.

• Marine insurance claims and defences.

• Registering ships for ship owners, demise charterers and banks/financiers; and the licensing and temporary registration of foreign-owned ships in the Special Register for Vessels and Ship Owning Companies engaged in Cabotage trade.

• Conducting relevant searches on the titles and liens in Nigeria and abroad on ships to be purchased by clients through banks.

• Conducting searches and advising on what assets should be given as securities.

• Advising ship mortgagors, owners & operators, and conducting litigation on disputes connected to:
1. carriage of goods by sea
2. loss of or damage to cargo
3. personal injury and death
4. bills of lading
5. charter-parties (bareboat charters)
6. ownership
7. sale/purchase
8. leasing
9. financing and mortgaging of ships and aircraft.

• Advising and preparing agreements on loans, guarantees, financial indemnities, escrows, undertakings, debentures, Memorandum of Agreements and other ship’s sale, purchase and delivery documents, bills of sale, ship mortgages, crew management, attachments of ship’s earnings and insurance money.
Preparation, perfection and registration of legal ship ownership and ship mortgages.

Our Maritime Team