Maritime Law

Introduction to Maritime Law Maritime Law, branch of law relating to commerce and navigation on the high seas and on other navigable waters. Specifically, the term refers to the body of customs, legislation, international treaties, and court decisions pertaining to ownership and operation […]


A shallow draft, walled-in marine conveyance used to haul cargo, usually in bulk. A barge may be self-propelled, although it is more commonly pulled or pushed by a tug or other vessel. Barges are used principally on inland waterways, although some oceangoing vessels are specially equipped to carry b…

Habitual Place of Work

Habitual Place of Work The Jurisdictional Rule about the Habitual Place of Work Note: for complementary information, see the entry on jurisdictional choice in this legal encyclopedia. Special Jurisdictional Rule in Employment Contract Matters: The Habitual Place of Work Introduction and General Features The historical background to Article 21(1)(b)(i) of the Brussels I bis Regulation … Read more

International Maritime Organization Conventions

International Maritime Organization (IMO) Treaties or International Agreements Introduction The majority of conventions adopted under the auspices of the International Maritime Organization or for which the Organization is otherwise responsible, fall into three main categories. The first group is concerned with maritime safety; the second with the prevention of marine pollution; and the third with … Read more

Jones Act

Summary of Jones Act

A provision of the Merchant Marine Act of 1920 designed to clarify the law by which a seaman could recover for injuries sustained in the course of employment. An earlier act (38 Stat. 1164 [1915]) had permitted seamen to recover more than cure and maintenance for […]


Summary of Salvage In maritime law, the compensation allowed to persons through whose assistance a ship or its cargo is saved in whole or in part. Four elements are essential to validate a salvage claim: (1) a marine peril must have existed; (2) the service must have been voluntary; (3) the […]

General Average

Summary of General Average

An ancient principle in international maritime law requiring a contribution by the vessel and cargo interests to pay for "extraordinary expenses and sacrifices"incurred in saving the vessel and its cargo. The term average derives from an Arabic word […]


Summary of Adventure

In marine insurance, any maritime enterprise. The term is most commonly used to denote the risks undertaken by a vessel and her cargo in the course of transiting the seas.

(Main Author: William J. Miller)

Description of Adventure Resources See Also Joint […]

International Maritime Organization

Summary of International Maritime Organization

A specialized agency of the United Nations concerned with maritime safety and protection of the marine environment. The IMO was created as the result of the United Nations Maritime Conference of 1948; the convention creating the IMO did not, […]

Maritime Piracy

Maritime Piracy Definition of Maritime Piracy In the United Nations Convention on the Law of the Sea (UNCLOS) of 1982, “maritime piracy”, in its article 101, consists of: any illegal acts of violence or detention, or any act of depredation, committed for private ends by the crew or the passengers of a private ship or … Read more

Alabama Arbitration

“Alabama” Arbitration Introduction According to Collier’s New Encyclopedia, the Alabama claims were a “series of claims made in 1871 by the United States against the English Government for damages done to shipping during the Civil War, after a formal discussion between the two governments in 1865, and fruitless conventions for their settlement in 1868 and … Read more

Bering Sea Arbitration

Bering Sea Arbitration Definition The important fishery dispute between Great Britain and the United States, which was closed by this arbitration, arose in the following circumstances. Background In the year 1867 the United States government had purchased from Russia all her territorial rights in Alaska and the adjacent islands. The boundary between the two powers, … Read more

War Risks

The risks borne by a cargo owner or shipper that his goods will be lost or damaged owing to hostile actions at sea. Marine cargo policies exclude war risks from coverage, responding only for marine perils such as sinking, fire, collision, and various perils of the sea. War risks are covered in a sep…