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Old 25-12-2015, 05:45   #1
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Salvage Law?

Merry Christmas all.

We have been reading another thread here about a missing sailboat in the Bahamas. The thread is starting to drift and turn ugly during a terribly difficult time for the OP. I thought it may be best to start a new thread instead.

I am past ignorant of salvage law and in need of an education. Would someone be so kind as to point me in the right direction? This link has already been posted but it contains very little information other than "just award under well-established salvage law."

Todd Tholke v. Sailing Vessel Energy Team AC45 Litigation Successfully Resolved, Energy Team Thanks TholkeÂ*|Â*Edgcomb Law Group, LLP

Hard for an ignorant farm boy to believe anyone can claim the value of a vessel for actions as simple as have been stated. If so, why would anyone "steal" a vessel?

Thanks in advance.
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Old 25-12-2015, 07:08   #2
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Re: Salvage Law?

This wiki page has the general gist. Every country has their own specific laws however.

https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Law_of_salvage
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Old 25-12-2015, 07:15   #3
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Re: Salvage Law?

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Old 25-12-2015, 07:54   #4
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Re: Salvage Law?

Quote:
Originally Posted by JimandBlieu View Post
Hard for an ignorant farm boy to believe anyone can claim the value of a vessel for actions as simple as have been stated.
As posted in the original thread:

Quote:
Originally Posted by Jim Cate View Post
IF you recall correctly? Don't think that you do, mate.

The award is determined by an Admiralty court, not the assisting vessel's captain, and it will be assessed with consideration of the difficulty and danger and expense of the salvage. It is seldom anywhere near the value of the distressed vessel.

In this case, as Ann said earlier, it isn't a salvage mission anyway, but a simple transport back to the errant yacht. There has been no mention of any reason he would require a tow anywhere.

I think that your advise to gain the ride back to the boat by deceit is bad, and would likely result in reprisal from an otherwise friendly skipper.

Jim
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Old 25-12-2015, 08:05   #5
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Re: Salvage Law?

Thanks Sea Dreaming. It would appear my new found knowledge is in line with logic.

From wiki...

"The assumption here is that when faced with the loss of his vessel and cargo, a reasonable prudent owner would have accepted salvage terms offered, even if time did not permit such negotiations"

I am left assuming a court or arbitrator would not award a $500,000 payment to a salvor for tossing a line.


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Old 25-12-2015, 08:44   #6
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Re: Salvage Law?

Quote:
Originally Posted by JimandBlieu View Post
Thanks Sea Dreaming. It would appear my new found knowledge is in line with logic.

From wiki...

"The assumption here is that when faced with the loss of his vessel and cargo, a reasonable prudent owner would have accepted salvage terms offered, even if time did not permit such negotiations"

I am left assuming a court or arbitrator would not award a $500,000 payment to a salvor for tossing a line.


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There's a fairly well documented history on salvage awards...

The main factors include:
1. Danger/Peril to the salvage vessel and crew
2. Effort=Time/Cost/Expenditure to the salvage vessel

Of course it's all a sliding scale dependent on salvage value and/or "liability" of the unsalvaged vessel... Crazy extreme rewards do happen, but more often than not, the cost is somewhat reasonable considering a loss...

And..
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Old 25-12-2015, 08:45   #7
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Re: Salvage Law?

Quote:
Originally Posted by JimandBlieu View Post

I am left assuming a court or arbitrator would not award a $500,000 payment to a salvor for tossing a line.
EXACTLY !
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Old 25-12-2015, 15:50   #8
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Re: Salvage Law?

Here is a case fairly simular to the dagny....owner asks for a simple tow and the salvager asks for $18k plus salvage. Atlantis Marine Towing Salvage & Services, Inc. v. James J. Sims, No. 1:2013cv21005 - Document 74 (S.D. Fla. 2014) :: Justia
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Old 26-12-2015, 08:27   #9
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Re: Salvage Law?

They can ask....

Correct me if I'm wrong but that suit was brought for breach of contract, quantum meruit, and unjust enrichment not a salvage claim. It also looks like all three were denied, or am I in error?




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Old 26-12-2015, 08:53   #10
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Re: Salvage Law?

Quote:
Originally Posted by JimandBlieu View Post
They can ask....

Correct me if I'm wrong but that suit was brought for breach of contract, quantum meruit, and unjust enrichment not a salvage claim. It also looks like all three were denied, or am I in error?

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Dunno... I read too many techincal docs to even have a stomach to look at legal ones...


EDIT! I kill me... I just linked the original post litigation...
Jeezo... Idjit...

Recent limelight salvage case
French boat's rescuer seeks $200K award - SFGate

Settled out of court undisclosed.... My guess? 20k?
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Old 26-12-2015, 08:56   #11
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Re: Salvage Law?

This might help if you want to research....

Inside the <I>Blackwall</I> Box: Explaining U.S. Marine Salvage Awards by Joshua C. Teitelbaum :: SSRN
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Old 26-12-2015, 09:19   #12
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Re: Salvage Law?

Quote:
Originally Posted by JimandBlieu View Post
Merry Christmas all.

……...

I am past ignorant of salvage law and in need of an education. Would someone be so kind as to point me in the right direction? This link has already been posted but it contains very little information other than "just award under well-established salvage law."
……...
Salvage of the oil tanker Kirki.
While the following doesn't exactly answer your questions, it was an interesting salvage.

This link is part of the factual report and salvage aspects are about 2/3 down the page.
https://www.amsa.gov.au/environment/...cidents/Kirki/

And this link is actual footage plus a good dose of humour.
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Old 26-12-2015, 10:18   #13
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Re: Salvage Law?

As has been stated, each country has their own laws and there are no international agreements for international waters The insurance company typically owns a boat that has been abandoned lost or sunk. No such thing as finders-keepers.
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Old 26-12-2015, 11:22   #14
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Re: Salvage Law?

If find salvage laws a really interesting reminder of just how much the world of sailing has changed in 150 years.

Before diesel engines, steel hulls, GPS, CG helicopters, EPIRB's and radio - the brave and hard men who risked their lives in desperate situations was the first responders of the shipping world. The only way a ship owner had to avoid a 100% loss of of their investment in ship and cargo on a lee shore was through salvage.

Admiralty law is a essentially a commerce court - designed to balance the interests of salvors, insurance companies, investors in shipping, ship labor (crew), and cargo owners. It was never meant to deal with weekend sailors on 30ft fiberglass boats.

But that's the system in the US (and most of the world) and it's not going to change because some cruisers think it's unfair. Admiralty actions go on in their own world without even a nod to the legal protections we expect on dry land -- such as as small claims court, consumer protection laws, contingency paid lawyers, state attorney generals, or threats of class actions.

Admiralty law is another good reason to insure your boat. While I have no great love for insurance companies, they know their way around defending a salvage case.


The history of Admiralty law is fascinating:

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Admiralty_law

And salvage is still dangerous work worth a big payday for those willing to risk their lives. This picture is amazing. The guys on the bow of the Shinyo sure hope the guy with the heaving line has a good arm.
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Old 26-12-2015, 11:41   #15
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Re: Salvage Law?

Finders Keepers, Losers Weepers.

I am a cruiser and if someone else needs help I give it freely to the fullest extent safety allows. But, by jingo, by crikey, I have heard stories that show not all cruisers and people of the sea can be regarded above gutter scum.

When a cruiser loses his boat it can be that persons total assets. Even a dinghy gone adrift can destroy some budget cruisers dream.

The cost of Admiralty Court would be more than the value of my boat.
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