LLM Programme

The taught modules offered on the LLM programme vary from year to year. Please check the full list of taught modules list for details of modules running in specific academic years. We make every effort to ensure that every module will be offered, but modules are subject to change and cancellation. You are therefore advised to check this site regularly for further updates throughout the year preceding entry to the LLM programme.

Credit value: 30 credits (12 ECTS)
Module Convenor:
Dr Melis Özdel
Intercollegiate teaching: No
Teaching Method: 20 x two-hour seminars
Who may enrol: LLM students
Prerequisites: None
Barred module combinations: None
Core module for specialism: International Commercial Law, Maritime Law
Practice Assessment: to be confirmed
Assessment method for LLM students: 3-hour unseen written examination
Module Overview

Module summary

English law enjoys a long-standing predominance in the international shipping market, as it is frequently chosen by the parties to govern their contracts of carriage. A vast amount of goods is carried around the world under contracts of carriage governed by English law. This module offers an in-depth study of the two main forms of contract of carriage, namely charterparties and bills of lading.

The aims of the module, in essence, are:

  • to ensure a thorough understanding of the key aspects of the English law of carriage of goods by sea and their practical implications in light of the commonly used standard form charterparties and bills of lading;
  • to give students the ability to examine the ways in which this field of law interlinks and operates with other areas of commercial law, such as international trade and commercial conflict of laws and jurisdiction;
  • to develop students’ ability to navigate through real life legal problems by covering various key issues ranging from contract formation to remedies; and
  • to raise awareness of the major mandatory sea carriage regimes, as well as the recent discussions and attempts to bring uniformity in this area.

Module syllabus

The module topics include:

  • Introduction to the law of carriage of goods by sea
  • Voyage Charters
  • Time Charters
  • Discharge of charter: Performance, frustration and breach
  • Functions of bills of lading and other shipping documents
  • Carriage of Goods by Sea Act 1971 and Carriage of Goods by Sea Act 1992
  • The Hague-Visby Rules
  • The Hague Rules, the Hamburg Rules and the Rotterdam Rules
  • The governing law and jurisdiction under contracts of carriage.

Recommended materials

There is no single textbook covering the entire course syllabus. However, you will find that the major topics are covered in Wilson J.F. (2010) Carriage of goods by sea (7th edition) (Harlow: Longman). It is recommended that students also consult the following practitioners’ books:

- Cooke J. et al (2007), Voyage Charters (3rd edition) (Informa)
- Coghlin T. et al (2008), Time Charters (6th edition) (Informa)
- Treitel G.H. et al (2012), Carver on Bills of Lading, (3rd edition) (Sweet & Maxwell)
- Eder B, et al (2011), Scrutton on Charterparties and Bills of Lading, (22nd edition) (Sweet & Maxwell).

In the lecture notes, there will also be references to various other practitioners’ books and journal articles.

Preliminary reading

Wilson J.F. (2010) Carriage of goods by sea (7th edition) (Harlow: Longman), Part I

Cooke J. et al (2007), Voyage Charters (3rd edition) (Informa), Chapter 1

Coghlin T. et al (2008), Time Charters (6th edition) (Informa), Chapter 1

Other information: N/A
Prizes for this module: There are currently no prizes available for this module.


The application process for the 2014-15 academic session, for entry in September 2014, is now open.

Please refer to the How to apply section for information on the application process.