Rowan Companies Inc (a Body Corporate) and others v Lambert Eggink Offshore Transport Consultants of (a Body Corporate) and others: CA 30 Jul 1998

The Plaintiffs had entered into a towage contract with Lambert Eggink Offshore Transport Consultants. Those Defendants are a body known as a VOF under Dutch Law, being a form of partnership under that law. It is a body that has no separate legal personality, but a suit will lie against it in its own name. Under a provision referred to as clause 24 of the contract there was a time limit. At a later stage the Plaintiffs sought to join as individual Defendants the partners VOF. The issue was whether they were too late to do so because of the time bar in clause 24, which required notification of a claim within six months of delivery of the ‘Tow’. Article 18 (1) of the Dutch Commercial Code provides that: ‘ In the case of a Commercial Partnership i.e. a VOF each of the partners is jointly and severally bound in respect of the obligations of a partnership’.
Held: (Majority) Clause 24 of the contract did not provide the individual partners with a Defence, because they were not contracting parties, and because the cause of action did not arise out of the agreement and it was not connected with the agreement. It arose out of Article 18 of the Dutch Commercial Code.
[1999] 2 Lloyds Rep 443, [1998] EWCA Civ 1354
England and Wales
Cited by:
CitedS v Suren and Another QBD 10-Sep-2004
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Updated: 08 May 2021; Ref: scu.144833