Regardless of whether the vessel operates on time or voyage charter , the Master signs the Bill of Lading on behalf of Head Owners. Time/ Voyage charterers and shippers have limited powers to interfere with Master signing the bill of lading.
It is usual for new ships to be chartered for a long period ,say for 10 years. Owner has to keep the vessel seaworthy, man her, insure her, and technically operate her as per agreed charter party parameters. Charterers run the ship commercially in respect of cargoes, employment and give voyage orders. They pay for ships bunkers ( not lubes ) port expenses, agency fees, communication .
The time-charter hire is paid as a fixed rate per day, The shipowner does not get freight. Then vessel may go off hire if the charter party performance is breached like engine, boiler failures, pollution detention or cargo-pump breakdowns. Speed and bunkers consumptions are specified in the C/P . Diversions due to accident , breakdown, for landing sick crew or for whatever causes vessel is responsible are on owners account.
When sub chartered by the Head time charterers , the Master is now acting both as the ship Head owners and Disponent owners representative. When the agent refers to the owner it is the Disponent owner.
Time-Charterers are responsible for all water used for tank cleaning water and boiler feed water. Owners are responsible for all water used for domestic reasons. Tank chemicals used for tank cleaning , Nitric acid for passivation , lab reagents for wall wash , rags, Scotch Brite pads, shoe covers etc is on the Time-Charterers account and should therefore be ordered through them.
On a voyage-charter, owners get money by way of freight in a lump sum. Owners do not get freight for anything loaded over the fixture.
The Charterers do not get involved in the vessel’s operation. Their only obligation is to deliver the cargo as described in the charter party to the vessel, and the loading and discharging is to be performed within the agreed time.
If the agreed time is exceeded a compensation called demurrage is payable to the Owner. However the ship should remain at charters disposal. In between this if you mindlessly bunker the ship demurrage cannot be claimed.
Laytime continues till cargo documents come on board. The time of hose disconnection is important for vessels on voyage charter as the voyage ends there. Sample of laytime demurrage notice :
“ without prejudice to the owners claim for demurrage, this serves to notify you that according to my calculations the laytime of 72 hours stipulated in the C/P has been utilized on date/ hour, whereupon the vessel is now operating on demurrage” signed master. Owners have lien upon cargo for freight, dead freight, demurrage, average and other charges.
If the charterer does not load full cargo owner can claim deadfreight. Ensure the deadfreight is signed at the time of signing bill of lading. If the Charterers are unable to deliver a full cargo (or whatever minimum quantity has been agreed) Owners are entitled to dead-freight when there is draft restriction. If the vessel is cubed out then it is on owners account
The Charterers pay for the transportation either by a lumpsum or by a fixed rate per metric ton . If the freight is payable as a lumpsum, the agreed cargo capacity is at Charterers disposal and must be paid for whether used or not. If freight is payable per metric ton of cargo loaded, the master must load maximum possible.
When the Voyage Charterer sub charters the ship the master must ensure that all instructions are in accordance with the original C/P, especially clauses like NAABSA.
On a voyage-charter, Head owners / Disponent owners pay for the bunkers and for most expenses relating to the port calls including communication and representation.
Voyage charterer have option of subletting part or whole of vessel but remain responsible for payments---read your charter party in full .
A contract of affreightment is usually based on voyage-charter terms . The contract covers a certain lumpsum quantity of cargo which is to be moved within a certain time frame. A contract of affreightment does not involve a specific named vessel. Owners are free to use any suitable vessel and even to charter another ship.
-------CAPT AJIT VADAKAYIL29 YEARS IN COMMAND