Hanjin bankruptcy – forwarders should now watch out

The seventh largest shipping company in the world has gone into trouble. The impending bankruptcy of the Hanjin shipping company is driving companies in the shipping and transport industry crazy. A few days ago, Hajin filed for insolvency. This opens the way to liquidation or restructuring.

Hanjin’s insolvency affects the entire supply chain. There are increasing reports that ports are refusing cargo ships from Hanjin access to the port area. The fear is that Hanjin will no longer be able to pay port dues. The delays are still to be cushioned, but it can be assumed that they will add up even more in the next few days. For many of those affected, the current question is how to get the containers from the ships. There are also reports that Hanjin will only release non-loaded containers for loading with another shipping company once all open items at Hanjin have been paid beforehand.

Hanjin’s bankruptcy affects all interested cargoes

Even if the containers have already been unloaded, the container terminals are currently positioned crosswise. According to initial reports of experience, these do not release the containers unless collateral and undertakings are provided. The return of the containers to the hinterland depots is also no longer accepted or the terminals require the return of the containers to them. In addition, there is currently the problem that already loaded containers have to be rebooked or loaded onto other shipping companies. The additional costs incurred for this may have to be allocated or forwarders may be held liable.

Companies who are in business contact with Hanjin or have cargo with Hanjin should immediately seek appropriate protection and advice, preferably from a specialist lawyer for transport law. This applies in particular to fixed cost forwarders who are held liable by their customers for delivery delays and want to pass these on to Hanjin.

For questions about the Hanjin bankruptcy and consequences for forwarders and prospective cargo forwarders, please contact us.

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Lawyer Dr. Tristan Wegner

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