This week BIMCO warned shipowners of a number of private maritime security companies using unofficial copies of GUARDCON to conclude transit agreements with Shipowners. BIMCO highlight a handful of cases where wordings vary from the genuine GUARDCON wording. BIMCO warns that using these unofficial versions as well as breaching BIMCO’s copyright may lessen the liabilities and responsibilities of private maritime security companies. The changes are not clearly marked in the text making it difficult for a shipowner to detect the changes.
Signing a fake GUARDCON that may contain subtle amendments to the liability provisions could prove to be a costly error for a shipowner if something goes wrong.
The Club recommends that owners verify the source of any GUARDCON contract to establish that it has been printed directly from IDEA2 - BIMCO’s online contract editing system. If in doubt, you can contact the BIMCO Secretariat who will verify the document.
More information is available on BIMCO's website:https://www.bimco.org/sitecore/content/home/news/2015/07/21_turning_the_tide_on_homemade_guardian_contracts
For more information on Maritime Security & Piracy view our dedicated resources page.