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James Kennedy

Legal Director

James specialises in shipping, international trade, and insurance disputes, and is a go-to person in the market for bunker disputes and is recommended by his peers as "Mr. Bunkers".

James qualified as a solicitor in 2008 and has a reputation as a strong technical shipping lawyer. James has an astute commercial understanding of shipping and international trade disputes particularly from his secondments to a major international insurance company and one of the world's leading commodities traders. He acts for clients throughout the marine industry including insurers, ship owners, charterers, traders and bunker suppliers. James has a broad range of shipping and international trade expertise and is recognised as having real gravitas and credibility in this sector.

James has represented clients in numerous LMAA, LCIA, ICC and ad hoc arbitrations.

James was appointed as a member and legal advisor to the BIMCO sub-committee on the revision of the Bimco Bunker Terms.


  • Advising shipowners on the use of 'scrubbers' and preparing for IMO 2020.
  • Advising an international fuel supplier in relation to significant vessel casualties involving engine problems.
  • Songa Chemicals v Navig8 v Glencore Agriculture [2018] - acted for the successful claimant owners in a matter concerning maritime letters of indemnity.
  • Successfully acting for major fuel and lubricant suppliers and their credit insurers in the recovery of unpaid debts following the collapse of Hanjin.
  • Acting for a Sovereign State Bank in a multi-jurisdictional dispute with a major Shipowner on ownership of a VLCC following the debt restructuring of a strategically important importer of petroleum products.
  • Successfully acting for Bunker Suppliers in the recovery of unpaid debts following the collapse of OW Bunkers.
  • Aria Inc v Credit Agricole [2014] - Obtaining an injunction on behalf of Owners, their P&I Club, and Charterers' Administrator, preventing a bank from making a payment under a guarantee given following a ship arrest.
  • Access Bank Plc v Capital Oil and Gas [2013] - Commercial Court case on persistent breaches of the Court's Orders by a Nigerian oil trader.
  • Leading and delivering an international debt recovery service for a major international Carrier with numerous uninsured claims against cargo interests.
  • Advising and acting for Charterers and their P&I Club on unsafe port claims in Columbia following adverse conditions caused by the La Niña phenomenon in 2010.