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The Legal Environment : Law Essay Sample

Law Essay
Paper title: The Legal Environment
Pages: 3
Academic level: University
Discipline: Law Subject
Paper Format: APA
Sources: 3

Discuss the public law and private law ramifications for DWI in thissituation. How would the legalities be different if the incident happenedat a DWI resort on the US mainland? What should DWI do for Mrs. Lowell,and in terms of developing policies for future criminal incidents?

All ships owned by DWI are flagged in the Bahamas and Liberia. The `flagof convenience` rules have both public law and private law implications.Private law comes into play in the employer-employee, passenger contract,and cargo contract obligations of the ship. Public law also interfaceswith these rules in that ships and companies pick and choose flags ofconvenience for individual ships based upon liability concerns such asnegligence, contractual, labor, customs, immigration, and/or environmentallaws.

The `flag of convenience` arrangement, also known as foreign registries,offered by the Bahamas, Liberia, Panama and other countries, permit shipowners to avoid most of the wage and labor laws of the United States. Aship is subject to liability as if it were `within` the country whose flagit flies. DWIs passenger tickets and contracts also make reference to thisfact that all claims by passengers or employees must be litigated in andunder the law of the country whose flag the ship in question flies.

Mr. and Mrs. Lowell were passengers on one of DWIs smaller cruise ships,The Minnow, for a weeklong journey from Miami, with stops in Nassau, KeyWest, and Grand Cayman. The Minnow flies the flag of Liberia. One nightduring the cruise, the Howells returned to their cabin and find two shipemployees removing cash and Mrs. Lowells jewelry from the ship-providedsafe. Mr. Lowell struggled with the men, but he collapsed and suffered afatal heart attack. Mrs. Lowell was locked inside the cabin restroom andthe robbers escaped. A few hours later, the ship docked in Grand Cayman,and the two robbers left the ship with the cash and jewelry stolen fromthe Lowells safe; the robbers did not return to the ship. Mrs. Lowell wasrescued several hours after the ship left Grand Cayman and identified thetwo employees in a photo lineup.

The day after her return to Miami, Mrs. Lowells attorney faxed DWI aletter threatening to sue them for negligent supervision, training, andhiring of employees; breach of contract; infliction of emotional distress;assault; battery; theft; and wrongful death unless DWI tendered the sum of$10 Million dollars within 10 business days.

Assume that under Liberian law, a wife is the property of the husband andhas no standing to sue or claim damages for his injuries, and further thatany property within the possession of Husband and Wife is deemed to be thesole property of the husband.

A few online reviews for this assignment are:• Admiralty Law ( asummary of maritime and admiralty law.

• International Council of Cruise Lines ( a tradeassociation website and contains summaries of standards for cruisepassenger safety.

Scenario: You have just been hired by Diversified Worldwide Industries (DWI), Inc.,as the Vice President of Risk Management. DWI is headquartered in WestPalm Beach, Florida, and has over 150 offices in 30 countries. DWI isincorporated in the State of Delaware; its ships are flagged by Liberiaand the Bahamas.

The Corporations principal activities are grouped into the followingareas:
  • ENVIRONMENT: Water and water treatment, waste management;
  • OIL & ENERGY: Exploration, production, transport, refining, wholesalemarketing, alternative fuels research;
  • COMMUNICATIONS: Telecommunications, Internet, audiovisual activities,publishing and multimedia;
  • LEISURE & RECREATION: Hotels, casinos, cruise ships;
  • REAL ESTATE: Builds homes and manages properties in active adult,age-restricted communities;
  • FINANCIAL: Brokerage for capital market investments in Russia, EasternEurope, China, and emerging markets;
  • MANUFACTURING: Produces, distributes, markets, exports and importsspirits and wines.
Your duties as the VP for Risk Management will require that you developknowledge and expertise in all areas of business law, consult withcorporate and outside counsel on legal matters, and advise the board as toavailable options to reduce or minimize the risk and liability of DWI inits ongoing activities.

Free Written Sample


The Legal Environment
[Author’s Name]
[Institution’s Name]


The Legal Environment
Registering a ship in a State different to the owner's own is a practice which goes back several centuries and, for a long time, maritime transport has been making use of that system in order to overcome certain restrictions. The 20th century marked the beginning of a new era in which the United States played a predominant role as regards the creation, development and consolidation of a system from which it would obtain enormous advantages, both in periods of peace and of war, helped at first by the birth of the Panamanian register and then on the Liberian one. In this context it is important to distinguish between the systems which offer the necessary guarantees and those which do not. It is a mistake to label closed registers intrinsically safe and abiding by international regulations, and DWI as unsafe and dangerous. In fact, there are DWI with excellent safety records and closed registers with very poor ones. While, many DWI have failed to produce adequate regulatory regimes that ensure the safe operation of ships, as they do not have the adequate technical expertise necessary to ensure proper control of the safety of the ships flying their flags, and lack the required legal framework to implement the international conventions.

Conflict resolving procedures between two different set of legal framework of two nations operations do not follow a standard script or linear path. International conflict resolving procedures between two different set of legal framework is a complex and controversial affair. This complexity is caused partly by the nature of the maritime law implication and partly by the nature of the actor. The actor in our case consists of a group or collective of diversified worldwide industries. (Sturmey S. 1989) To them, every international maritime law implication poses a multiple set of problems rolled into one. The first, external, problem is what to do about the maritime law implication, what is objectively required to address the maritime law implication. This problem relates to the type of policy instruments that are required and available and the perceived urgency of the problem. The second, internal, problem is the problem of self-ship management of the diversified worldwide industries involved: how do we organise ourselves to be effective? And how can we mobilise enough political will and distribute risks and tasks?  (Montero FJ. 1991) International conflict resolving procedures between two different set of legal framework of two nations is dominated by the logic of intergovernmental cooperation.

In case of Mrs. Lowells, although professional negligence is often said to be functional for shipping companies, most recommendations relating to organizational professional negligence still fall within the realm of professional negligence resolution, reduction, or minimization. Action recommendations from the current organizational professional negligence literature show a disturbing lag with the functional set of background assumptions that are endorsed. Insofar as it could be determined, the literature on professional negligence is deficient (with minor exceptions) in three major areas. 

1. There is no clear set of rules to suggest when professional negligence ought to be maintained at a certain level, when reduced, when ignored, and when enhanced. 
2. There is no clear set of guidelines to suggest how professional negligence can be reduced, ignored, or enhanced to increase individual, group, or organizational effectiveness. 
3. There is no clear set of rules to indicate how conflict involving different situations can be managed effectively. 

The so-called 'paradox of conflict prevention' sums up this problem. The earlier an intervention takes place, the higher are the chances of success and the less costly the intervention is likely to be but the more difficult it is to rally enough political will to do it. Differences of opinion concerning the urgency of the problem, risk and threat perceptions and the national interests at stake make it extremely difficult to arrive quickly at a common position on instrumentation, etc. There is usually a divergence in the willingness among diversified worldwide industries to mobilise and apply adequate resources. The result is that the point at which enough political will is mobilised to manage a maritime law implication usually comes after the point at which it can be controlled. The consequence is that any collective of diversified worldwide industries, because of the way their self-organization currently works, is most likely to react in a conflict resolving between two set of legal framework mode. It is clear that by increasing ownership transparency, safety and security would improve. It is necessary that the “genuine link” concept, mentioned in article 91 of the Convention on the Law of Sea, be effective. As the 1986 UN Convention on Conditions for Registration of Ships has not come into force, efforts should be made to review the Convention in order to make the conditions of entry into force more widely acceptable or, if this proves impracticable, consideration should be given to the development of an entirely new international treaty addressing the conditions of registration of ships. (F.J. Montero, 1991) It would then be possible to ensure that all Flag States have a competent and adequate maritime administration and that a “genuine link” exists between register and ship. It would also make it very difficult for substandard Flag States to continue in business. Flag States should have a consolidated maritime administration keeping safety programs which ensure that the applicable international conventions are implemented, having qualified personnel to ensure that ships do not exceed the maximum age and are properly maintained; ensuring that recognized organizations authorized to act on their behalf comply with the applicable provisions of the pertinent international conventions and are continuously assessed; ascertaining that seafarers qualifications as well as endorsed foreign certificates comply with the minimum requirements of the 78/95 STCW Convention; and ensuring that Diversified Worldwide Industries and ships under its flag apply the established procedures in the Safety Management Code.

F.J. Montero, Centro internacional de servicios marítimos en Panamá. IEEM Newsletter 9 (1991), pp. 43–47.
Montero FJ. Panama as a Maritime Center. Proceedings from the I World Maritime Conference, Panama, vol. 1, 1991. p. 37–40.
Sturmey S. Open registers controversy. Proceedings from Which Register, Which Flag…now? Conference, vol. 2. New York: Lloyds of London Press; 1989. p. 125–7.

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