Implied Charterparty Terms

In addition to the express clauses agreed by the parties, every contract of affreightment is negotiated against a background of custom and commercial usage from which a series of obligations are implied which are automatically incorporated into the contract in the absence of agreement to the contrary. Since such obligations are derived from a common source in the law merchant, a similar result follows at common law irrespective of whether the terms of the contract are enshrined in a charterparty or evidenced by a bill of lading. There is, however, one important proviso. In contracts of carriage which are governed by the Hague or Hague/Visby Rules the scope and application of some of these implied obligations have been modified while the ability of the parties to exclude their operation by mutual agreement has been considerably restricted.