Terms & Conditions

Terms and Conditions for Howe Robinson Partners Companies

These terms and conditions apply to all dealings between You and HRP and will be effective whenever you request HRP to provide Services or You respond to HRP in relation to the provision of Services. These terms and conditions create a legally binding agreement between You and HRP (You, HRP and Services are defined below).

Attention is specifically drawn to the provisions of these terms and conditions that limit HRP’s liability.

1.  Definitions

In these terms and conditions the following definitions apply:

“HRP” Any company of Howe Robinson Partners Pte Ltd.
“Fixture” A contract or contracts including but not limited to for the sale, purchase, construction or charter of a ship together with negotiations to enter such contracts.
“Negotiations” Exchanges, whether verbal or in writing, in relation to concluding a Fixture.
“Post Fixture Services” Assistance with communications relating to operational matters arising from the performance of a Fixture.
“Principal” A party to a Fixture including the owner, seller, buyer, builder or charterer of a ship and any party guaranteeing the obligations of such a party. Principal may include You.
“Representative” A person or company, including but not limited to a ship manager, chartering department, shipbroker or other agent, who is not a Principal but is involved in negotiations on behalf of a Principal.
“Services” The Services referred to in clause 2 of these terms and conditions.
“You” The party requesting HRP’s services or responding to HRP in relation to the provision of the Services. Where such party is acting as a Representative references to You will additionally include the Principal.

The above definitions apply whether the defined words appear in the singular or plural form.

2.  Services covered by these terms

2.1  HRP will act as a shipbroker in relation to Fixtures. The role of HRP is to introduce Principals. Thereafter HRP will assist the Principals and/or their Representatives as a channel for Negotiations as well as providing such Post Fixture Services as may be agreed or provided by HRP.

2.2  Unless specifically agreed in writing HRP will act solely as an intermediary in relation to Fixtures and will not enter any Fixtures arising from the Services as a Principal. HRP is not responsible for the performance or non performance of Fixtures or Principals.

2.3  Unless otherwise agreed the Services are provided on a Fixture by Fixture basis.

2.4  HRP may also agree to perform other tasks such as providing ship valuations and/or specific market research. Such tasks may be subject to specific provisions (such as the wording of a valuation certificate) in addition to these terms and conditions. In the event of, and only to the extent of, a conflict between these terms and conditions and the specific provisions the latter will prevail. Otherwise these terms and conditions, including those as to limitation of liability, will apply.

3.  Obligations of HRP

3.1  HRP will perform the Services with the reasonable skill and care expected of a professional shipbroker.

3.2  In dealing with others HRP will take care to stay within the authority given by You and to avoid misrepresentation.

3.3  During negotiations HRP undertakes to pass on offers, counteroffers and other such communications accurately and in a timely manner. This obligation applies both to passing communications to and from You.

3.4  It is understood that HRP may be dealing with Representatives or other intermediaries rather than directly with a Principal. In such cases HRP is dealing with such Representatives or other intermediaries in good faith as to the authority they possess but HRP does not give a warranty as to that authority.

3.5  If HRP is acting directly for a Principal then HRP warrants that HRP has the authority of that Principal.

3.6  If at any time HRP provides information in respect of a Principal, including but not limited to information regarding corporate structures or financial standing, it is understood and agreed that in relation to HRP such information is provided in good faith but without guarantee. It is the obligation of the Principal to decide whether to enter a Fixture with the proposed counterparty and on what terms.

3.7  Unless otherwise agreed in writing the Services are not provided on an exclusive basis and it is understood that HRP may act as a shipbroker for other parties in relation to the same or other Fixtures. In the event HRP is dealing directly with two Principals in relation to the same Fixture HRP’s duties will be to pass on offers, counteroffers and other such communications accurately and in a timely manner as authorised by each Principal in turn.  You recognise that HRP may be the sole broker in a transaction and agree that HRP is under no obligation to specifically disclose that fact.

4.  Confidentiality

Where HRP is given information stated by You to be on a confidential basis or it is expressly agreed that a Fixture is confidential (in either case “Confidential Information”) HRP will hold that Confidential Information in confidence and will not disclose it to any other party without prior permission from You. This obligation will not however extend to information which (i) was already or becomes known to HRP through other sources not subject to such an obligation of confidentiality (ii) is or becomes known to the market generally other than as a result of a breach of this obligation or (iii) which HRP is obliged to disclose pursuant to an order of a court or other such authority, or (iv) is given by you in confidence but on the understanding that it is passed on to a third party. In all cases such obligation of confidentiality shall be deemed to end 3 years after the end of performance of the Fixture in question or in the absence of a concluded Fixture 3 years from the end of the Negotiations.

5.  Obligations to HRP

5.1  If You are a Principal you warrant that you have full legal power to enter into the Fixture brought about by the Services. If You are acting as a Representative You warrant that you have the Principal’s authority (i) to accept these terms and conditions on their behalf and (ii) to make all offers, counteroffers and representations made during negotiations and (iii) to agree a Fixture on their behalf.

5.2  Where Services are provided You are deemed to have engaged HRP in relation to any Fixture that arises in connection with those Services whether or not it is concluded via HRP.

5.3  You will provide HRP with all information and instructions necessary for the performance of the Services. Where actions need to be taken by a certain time (such as reply times during negotiations) you will ensure HRP has sufficient time to forward such messages prior to the relevant time limit.

5.4  In relation to Post Fixture Services if HRP has asked you to use specific e-mail addresses for operational messages or claims then You will use those e-mail addresses. In the event that you do not receive a prompt acknowledgement of receipt of time sensitive messages or claims documentation from HRP you undertake to contact HRP to confirm receipt. HRP will have no responsibility for a failure to action a message or claims documentation unless it is sent to the correct address and acknowledged by HRP.

5.5  You will take care to avoid misrepresentations occurring in Negotiations. You will carefully review all messages sent or copied to You and promptly advise HRP of any errors or misrepresentations. HRP is not responsible for the consequences of a failure by You to review messages.

5.6  You warrant that You do not know of any reason why the Fixture could be unlawful or which could render the provision of the Services by HRP in breach of any relevant law, including but not limited to (i) sanctions imposed by the United Nations, European Union, The United States of America or any national government having authority over You, HRP, a Representative or a Principal (ii) laws relating to money laundering, bribery and corruption. You will promptly and fully inform HRP of any such reason that comes to your attention. In the event that HRP in their absolute discretion believes that the Fixture or the provision of the Services may infringe such laws they may by written notice terminate the Services immediately. In the event of such termination HRP will have no liability arising from such termination howsoever arising.

6.  Market Reports

If HRP publishes market reports or commentary these are provided for general information only and not for use in relation to specific Fixtures. Such market reports do not constitute advice and nothing contained in such documents amounts to a recommendation to enter or not to enter a Fixture and HRP has no liability for the consequences of any person, including You, purporting to rely on such market reports.

7.  HRP’s remuneration

7.1  On Fixtures HRP’s remuneration will (unless otherwise agreed) be in the form of a commission on the freight, hire or purchase price as the case may be. The level of commission payable and the party responsible for payment will be set out in the Negotiations.

7.2  If the commission payable to HRP is recorded in a commission clause in a charterparty or other agreement then commission will be payable in accordance with that clause. HRP will be deemed to have acted in reliance on the insertion of that clause and assented to the terms of the commission clause governing their right to commission.

7.3  If You are the party agreed to be responsible for paying the commission you undertake to make the payment or payments. If You are not the party responsible for making the commission payment You expressly agree to the making of provision for such commission in the Fixture.

7.4  Nothing in these terms will prevent HRP from enforcing a commission clause or other clause conferring a benefit on them as a third party in accordance with the terms of the Fixture.

7.5  In the absence of any specific provisions in the commission clause on voyage charters commission is payable on deadfreight and demurrage as well as on freight. Freight shall include all items that comprise the freight rate. On time charters commission will be payable on the hire paid under the charter and any continuation or extension of the charter. Commission is payable on sums received by You as and when received and You will not withhold payment pending resolution of unconnected matters. Commission is exclusive of all taxes and duties.  Where freight is adjusted as a result of a bunker escalation clause, commission is payable on the total (adjusted) freight.

7.6  The tasks in clause 2.4 above will be subject to the agreement of a specific fee between You and HRP. HRP will invoice You at the completion of the Services or at such other times and in such stages as may have been agreed. You will pay that fee within 30 days of the date of the invoice.

7.7  If the amount of commission or fee and/or the manner of its payment is not specifically agreed a reasonable commission or fee will be payable in accordance with market practice.

8.  Limitation of Liability

THIS CLAUSE LIMITS HRP’S LIABILITY TO YOU.

8.1  Nothing in these terms and conditions limits HRP’s liability for (i) fraud or fraudulent misrepresentation (ii) death or personal injury caused by the negligence of HRP.

8.2  HRP will, subject to the provisions of this clause 8, be liable to You for damage directly caused by the failure to perform the Services with the reasonable skill and care expected of a professional shipbroker provided always HRP will not be liable for:

(i) Loss of profits, business interruption, loss of reputation, indirect or consequential losses.

(ii) Damage caused by any event or cause that HRP was unable to avoid and/or the consequences of which could not have been prevented by the exercise of reasonable diligence.

(iii) Damage which was not solely caused by the act or omission of HRP or which would have occurred in any event.

8.3  HRP’s total liability arising from or in connection with the Services shall in no circumstances exceed the sum of USD 1,000,000.

8.4  The exclusions and/or limitations set out in this clause shall apply whether the claim against HRP is bought in contract, tort (including for negligence) breach of statutory duty or for any other cause whatsoever.

8.5  Any claim against HRP must be made in writing and notified to HRP within 14 days of the date on which You became aware or ought to have become aware of the circumstances giving rise to the claim and any claim not so notified shall be deemed waived and time barred. Howe Robinson shall in any event be discharged of all liability arising out of the Services unless suit is brought and written notice of it given to Howe Robinson within one year of the end of performance of the Fixture or in the absence of a concluded Fixture 1 year from the end of the Negotiations.

9.  Miscellaneous

9.1  All intellectual property rights in or arising out of the Services belong to HRP.

9.2  HRP has a general lien on all documents in its possession or control for all sums due from You to HRP whether arising out of the Fixture or otherwise.

9.3  If a court finds that any provision of these terms and conditions is invalid, illegal or unenforceable, that provision shall, to the minimum extent required, be deemed deleted and the validity, legality and enforceability of the remainder of that and all other provisions of these terms and conditions shall not be affected.

10. Jurisdiction and Law

These terms shall be governed by and construed in accordance with the laws of England and Wales and any dispute shall be subject to the exclusive jurisdiction of the English Courts.