Contractual Time Bars

These are clauses included in a contract which require the parties to give notice of a claim or to bring a claim within a specific time. Contractual time bars are treated as exemption clauses and will be strictly construed against those seeking to rely on them.

An example can be found in some tanker charter parties which state that if a demurrage claim is not received within 180 days “it shall be deemed to be waived, extinguished and absolutely barred”.  As brokers are often involved in preparing tanker demurrage claims, this time bar can be especially crucial.

A broker responsible for missing the time bar would face a heavy claim for damages from the principal for the loss suffered as a result of the claim becoming barred.