Key to Preventing Cargo Fraud: The Power of Shipping Policies

Shipping Policies

When it comes to shipping goods across international borders, there are a number of checks and balances in place to ensure that the cargo is delivered to the correct recipient. One of the most important of these checks is the requirement for the original shipping policy to be presented at the port of arrival.

The shipping policy is a legal document that proves ownership of the goods being shipped. It is typically held by the shipper, who is responsible for ensuring that it is delivered to the correct person at the port of arrival. In order for the cargo to be released to the recipient, they must present the original shipping policy to the maritime agent of the carrier company at the port of arrival.

This process is designed to prevent fraud and ensure that the goods are delivered to the rightful owner. If someone were to obtain the cargo without presenting the original shipping policy, there would be no way to verify that they were the legitimate recipient. This could lead to all sorts of problems, including disputes over ownership and even legal action.


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In a case presented to us, a company received a shipment of goods from the maritime agent of the carrier without presenting the original shipping policy. Instead, they obtained a delivery authorization from the agent without providing the required documentation. This was a clear breach of the rules and could have serious consequences.

It is important for both the shipper and the recipient to be fully aware of the requirements for shipping goods internationally. They must ensure that the original shipping policy is in their possession and that it is presented at the port of arrival without fail. Any deviation from this process could result in delays, disputes, and even legal action. By following the established procedures, both parties can be confident that the goods will be delivered safely and securely to their intended recipient.

In the world of international trade, maritime shipping is a crucial element that facilitates the smooth movement of goods across borders. However, this also makes it susceptible to fraud and deceit, as seen in a recent case we handled on behalf of a client.

Our client, a company holding the legitimate original shipping policy, had entrusted their goods to a shipping company for transportation. However, during the course of the shipment, a deceiving company managed to obtain a delivery document for the cargo through the connivance of the maritime agent. This resulted in the deceiving company receiving the goods, while our client was left with nothing.

Upon being approached by our client, we decided to file a lawsuit against the shipping company issuing the maritime shipping policy, the ship owners, the maritime agent, and the receiving company of the goods. It was important for us to establish the legal and contractual liability of all the parties involved for our client to receive the compensation they rightfully deserved.

To this end, we engaged with specialized experts, appointed by the court, within the field of maritime shipping to examine our claims and the truth of our requests and documents. We presented our case before the experts, and they were convinced of the responsibility of all the aforementioned parties. As a result, the experts issued a report holding all parties responsible for paying the value of the goods to our client.

This report proved to be instrumental in the court’s primary judgment, which held all parties liable for the loss suffered by our client. Not only was this judgment upheld by the Court of Appeal, but it was also affirmed by the Court of Cassation in Dubai. The legal battle was long and arduous, but it was worth it in the end, as our client received the compensation they deserved.

In conclusion, cases of this nature underscore the critical necessity of retaining legal professionals deeply knowledgeable about maritime shipping complexities. A thorough comprehension of the legal and contractual responsibilities of all stakeholders is imperative for the delivery of justice. Our legal firm boasts a strong commitment to furnishing clients with exceptional representation in such instances. We take pride in our ability to secure favourable outcomes, enabling our clients to navigate forward with confidence in the face of challenging legal matters.

The author of this insight is Emad El Habbak.

Emad is a senior associate at Galadari Advocates and Legal Consultants, with over 25 years of legal experience, and specialises in litigation and maritime law. Emad regularly advises private and governmental clients on both commercial and civil matters. He has extensive experience in maritime law and successfully heads the maritime team at Galadari.

For more information, please contact Emad directly on:

Emad El Habbak
Senior Associate