The Eurymedon (1975)
This case (The Eurymedon (1975) demonstrates that although an existingcontractual obligation cannot usually be consideration in an agreement betweenthe contracting parties,
this is not always the case
! The reasoning in the judgment in this case is a bit tortuous. This is probably because in fact the
of all the contracting parties were clear; the court struggled to find a way ofdelivering a judgement that reflected these intentions and was legally justifiable.
FACTS OF THE CASE
Owners ofgoodsCONTRACTCarriers ofgoodsStevedoresThe stevedores are negligentand damage the goods!
The owners of goods leave it too late to sue under the main contract – so try to sue thestevedores, and argue that there is an
between them and thestevedores, and that a term of this contract is that the stevedores should have exercised duecare in unloading the drilling equipment.Is this fair? When they entered into the main contract the owners were aware of thelimitation clause. Now they are trying to wriggle out of it on a technicality!Now, the stevedores could not rely on the exemption clause as a term in the originalcontract itself, as this would be contrary to the principles of privity of contract, even thoughthe clause was for their benefit.So the problem for the court was to find a way in which there was an implied agreementbetween the stevedores and the owners that
did include this clause
Carrierssubcontract tostevedores tounload goodsImpliedcontract?
Contract to deliver a piece of machinery – contains clause that owners cannot sue carriersor their servant/agents after 1year if anydamage occurs