Admiralty Cases

By John Levingston


Editor: John Levingston.

This section contains the name and key words for each case, and most Australian cases have a link to Austlii providing the whole text of the judgment. Where the case has been reported the citation is also included.

Please report interesting judgements in other jurisdictions by email to


High Court of Australia
Federal Court of Australia
Administrative Appeals Tribunal
Supreme Court of New South Wales
Supreme Court of Tasmania
Supreme Court of The Northern Territory
CANADA - Chris Giaschi's Maritime Law
Cornell University
US Supreme Court



Search AustLII for shipping cases heard in the High Court of Australia.


Search AustLII for Shipping and Navigation cases heard in the Federal Court of Australia.

Search AustLII for Admiralty cases heard in the Federal Court of Australia.

Cases of particular interest include:

YELLOW WOOD HOLDINGS PTY LTD v. THE OWNERS OF THE SHIP MV "CAPE DON" No. QG89 of 1995 FED No. 32/96 Admiralty. Application for return of bank guarantee given as security to avoid arrest of vessel which had since left the jurisdiction. Application based on change of ownership of vessel, and presence of vessel within Australia waters. Prejudice to plaintiff. Application refused.

MARINIS SHIP SUPPLIERS (PTY) LTD v. THE SHIP "IONIAN MARINER" No. VG 553 of 1995 FED No. 711/95 (Unreported: Federal Court of Australia, Ryan J, VG553/95, 4/9/95) Shipping and Navigation - Admiralty Jurisdiction, Law and Practice. Consideration was given to Rule 69 of the Admiralty Rules concerning the valuation and sale of a ship.

Malaysia Shipyard and Engineering SOB BHD v "Iron Shortland" as surrogate for "Newcastle Pride" (Unreported: Federal Court of Australia, Sheppard J, NG530/95, 25/9/95) the issues involved a general Maritime claim against a ship commenced as an action in rem against other ship, and whether the owners were identical

Ling v "Longevity" (Unreported: Federal Court of Australia Sheppard J, NG203/95, 25/9/95) the Court extended the 2 year limitation period within which a Plaintiff could bring an action under Section 396 of the Navigation Act 1912 (Cth) where the Plaintiff's Solicitors have mistakenly considered the limitation period to be 3 years provided in Section 37 of the Admiralty Act 1988 (Cth) without noting the exceptions found in Section 37(2) of that Act.


Search AustLII for shipping cases heard in the Administrative Appeals Tribunal.


Search AustLII for shipping cases heard in the Supreme Court of New South Wales.


Search AustLII for shipping cases heard in the Supreme Court of Tasmania.


Search AustLII for shipping cases heard in the Supreme Court of the Northern Territory.


The following case notes were provided by Miss Pauline Barratt, Solicitor with Jones Fee in Auckland New Zealand (Email:

Lyon and Anor v Switzerland and General Insurance Company Ltd (Unreported: NZ, 28/8/95) dealing with Hull Insurance, Time Clauses, Negligence of Ship's Officer, Causation, Quantification of Losses, Adjustment for Average and Consequential Losses involving the Ship "Manuia". Issues involve Clause 6.2.3 of the Hull Policy - "Negligence of Master, Officers, Crew or Pilots, provided such loss or damage has not resulted from want of due diligence by the Assured Owners or Managers". Another issue involved Section 81 of the Marine Insurance Act 1908 (NZ).

Bolton v NZ Insurance Co Ltd & Anor. [1995] 2 NZLR 224 issues involved Hull Insurance, Blue Water Cover, condition of notification of crew changes, coastal cruising warranty, liability of broker, contributory negligence of insured, contempt of Court (removal of vessel whilst under arrest), salvage, Marine Services Ltd v Bolton (No 3) (1993) 7 PRNZ 333.

Gates v Sun Alliance [1995] LLR 385 the issues involved Hull Insurance, Scuttling, Non-Disclosure, Moral Risk and Credibility of Insured.

Kelly and Anor. v The National Insurance Co of NZ Ltd and Ors. [1995] 1 NZLR 641 the issues involved accidental loss cover, exception for goods in transit, when transit ceased, recklessness of insured, breach of policy condition to take all due care.

Port of Tauranga Ltd v The Vessel "Noella K" (Unreported: NZ, 27/10/94) the issues involved a Caveat against release, Application to Set Aside, and grounds for obtaining a Caveat, Rule 18(1) of the Admiralty Rules 1975 (NZ).

Pegasus Lines SA v The Ship "Samarkand" (Unreported: NZ, 22/5/95) the issues involved misrepresentation in sub charter, negligent advice given by Master, Application to Set Aside Writ, Extent of Admiralty Jurisdition, Forum Non-Conveniens.

Marine Expeditions Inc v The Ship "Akademik Shokalskiy" [1995] 2 NZLR 743 the issues involved sister ship jurisdiction, application to Set Aside Writ, burden of proof, Foreign Arbitration.

Mannix v The Ship "Nam Sang" (Unreported: NZ, 3/2/94) the issues involved bail bond, Application for Security for Costs, weather jurisdiction in respect of security for costs and security to obtain release should be exercised on similar grounds.

King v The Ship "Grey Gull" (Unreported: NZ, 11/2/94) the issues involved sale of ship, claim by intervener and priorities.

Beacon Services, (1985) Ltd v The Fishing Vessel Endeavour III (Unreported: NZ, 8/7/94) the case involved a vessel subject to finance, assignment to financier by way of security, and beneficial ownership of the vessel.

Materiel Service, Combined Service Forces v The Ship "Marthalina" the issues involved confiscation of cargo, action by owner, Cook Islands Law and Jurisdiction, Arrest in New Zealand, Application to Set Aside, whether Writ could be renewed after 12 months, validity of renewal and cargo claim out of time.

Emery Air Freight Corp v Nerine Nurseries Ltd (Unreported: NZ High Court, 10/2/95) claim involved carriage by air, cargo damage, liability of contracting carrier, principal/agent, liability as Bailee at Common Law.



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