MOL COMFORT – Limitation Proceedings – Update

27. February 2014

Only 600 claims filed in the limitation proceedings

According to Lloyd’s List of  Feb. 26, 2014 only around 600 claims were filed in the limitation proceedings at the Tokyo District Court whereof a significant number of claims are double represented, once by the cargo interests and once by the NVOC carrier, hence the final number of claims may decline further.

“A court-appointed administrator is still evaluating the claims based on the principle of one cargo, one claim to avoid double claims,”
“The total amount of claims is not fixed. Some non-vessel operating common carriers have not yet indicated the amounts but filed their claims against the fund first, in case they receive claims from cargo interests in the future.”

This may mean that the Court will have to await the one your time bar under the respective NVOC bills of lading to correctly assess the total claim amount.

In view of the possibility that a number of NVOC claims may finally not materialize and taking into account the double representations we (ZASS) estimate that the final number of materialized claims may shrink down to 300 to 400 claims only with an estimated total cargo value of USD 15 million to USD 25 million which is well below the limitation fund of USD 41 million, hence a 100% dividend may become likely for those claimants who timely filed their claims by mid-November last year.

MOL may of course still try to defend the limitation fund prompting cargo claimants to turn their case against the ship yard, an option which still would be open. ZASS will closely monitor events and protect the interests of their clients. This monitoring of course also extends onto the case recently filed by MOL against the ship yard in the Tokyo District Court.

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