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How do you determine who the parties to a contract of carriage are? (The Nortrader)
Although the starting point for determining the identity of parties to a contract of carriage evidenced by a bill of lading will be the persons named in the bill of lading as shipper and carrier, the Commercial Court has emphasised that such a presumption is just that – a starting point. Where a claimant had been erroneously named as shipper in a bill of lading and had given neither express, nor implied authority for a shipping agent to enter into the contract on its behalf, an arbitral tribunal had no jurisdiction over it. The fact that the claimant had been erroneously named in over 30 previous bills of lading and had taken no active steps to correct the error did not amount to authority without more.
MVV Environment Devonport Ltd v NTO Shipping GmbH & Co KG MS ‘Nortrader’  EWHC 1371 (Comm)