Shipping Law

Shipping Law is defined as the set of Rules that regulate relations related to naval or maritime trade, navigation and shipping in general. Shipping Law is a peculiar branch of Commercial Law that regulates, on the one hand, the protection of the public interest and society (Public Shipping Law) and on the other hand, the protection of private relationships and interests (Private Shipping Law).

Public Shipping Law is divided into: (a) Public International Law, which concerns issues arising between countries from navigation, (b) Administrative Shipping Law, which regulates the methods of acquisition and removal of ship nationality, the control of ships as well as the those conditions of exercising the maritime profession, (seafaring work) etc., and (c) Criminal and Disciplinary Shipping Law, which concerns criminal and disciplinary offenses of seafarers.
Private Shipping Law which is divided into: (a) Private International Shipping Law which generally defines which state’s domestic law will be applied in cases of maritime relations, when these are not defined. These are followed by the International Maritime Conventions and (B) Shipping Labor Law that regulates maritime labor issues.


In May 2023, Law 5020/2023 entitled “Private Maritime Law Code and other urgent provisions of the Ministry of Shipping and Insular Policy” was published in the Government Gazette (GA’/29/15.2.2023). The objectives of this new law are the clear international orientation of the national maritime legislation and the restoration of the coherence of the Code, after the cracks it suffered from the ratification of a sufficient number of international conventions, the strengthening of legal certainty, the systematization of the transparency and publicity of of basic legal acts related to the exploitation of ships, the modernization, on the one hand, by the regulation of modern forms or tools of cooperation, on the other hand, by the reformation of existing regulations that proved to be imperfect, insufficient or obsolete, and, finally, the treatment of urgent issues related to shipping. In the long term, it aims to make the Greek legislative framework more attractive and friendlier to traders, so that it is more often chosen as applicable by the contracting parties and contributes, as far as it is concerned, to the strengthening of the Greek flag, as well as to the strengthening of shipping.


In this context, “Konstantinos Darivas and Associates” Law Office undertakes any case related to Shipping Commercial Law, both at the level of Private and International Law. Our partners, specialized in this field, are able to provide you with a full range of legal services in matters related to:

  • Purchase and Sale of ships locally or cross-border (passenger ships, cargo ships, tankers, yachts/boats) registered either under Greek or foreign flag
  • Negotiations for the purchase and sale of ships
  • Incorporation of Greek and foreign legal entities (companies, trusts, foundations)
  • Registration of branches of foreign companies in Greece
  • Drafting contracts in Shipping matters (e.g. purchase agreements)
  • Designation of grader to determine sale price and evaluate flag issues
  • Construction and repair of ships
  • Arrests of ships after natural persons
  • Recovery of outstanding payments
  • Shipping freight issues (collision liability, pollution, insurance issues) and representation before civil Courts


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