Insurance Law Implications of Delay in Maritime Transport

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Cargo insurance and delay: physical loss to the subject-matter insured


2.1 The main interest covered by a cargo policy is physical loss of or damage to the cargo. This type of loss has been the subject of the earlier cases on delay through which the current exclusion of delay losses in s 55(2)(b) of the MIA and in the standard market conditions have been developed. The motives behind excluding these losses were mainly twofold: the first one rested upon an analogy to inherent vice as an excluded event and the second one related to the approach to proximate causation in the late 19th century which sought to exclude delay as the last cause in time. This chapter will analyse the origins of the delay exclusion from the scope of cargo policies and assess whether the earlier authorities can survive the changes in law as to the rule of proximate causation. It will also be speculated on how the new rules on causation can be applied to circumstances involving delay as a cause of loss.

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