Duquesne Law Review


The ability to limit liability to the after the occurrence value of a vessel responsible for a maritime catastrophy is of critical importance and frequently dwarfs all other aspects of the controversy surrounding such disasters. Yet, it is often difficult to identify those entitled to seek such relief. This article explores the ranks of legal and equitable owners; of demise charterers; and of owners pro hac vice who may be entitled to limit liability. The article also delves into the problem of piercing corporate veils to permit or deny limitation. In concluding, the author argues that the complexity of modern business structures created for a host of tax and other considerations make a tying of the right to limit to the concept of ownership unrealistic, and calls for a more pragmatic solution to the problem.

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