Daphne maintains an active contentious and non-contentious commercial practice, with a focus on shipping, bunkering and international trade.
Having been in the industry for the past ten years, Daphne has acted for and advised clients who operate in different sectors of the shipping and trade market. These clients include financial institutions, insurers (P&I and H&M), shipyards, shipowners, charterers/operators, bunker traders and cargo owners.
Daphne rejoined Rajah & Tann in 2021 after spending 2 years with an International Group P&I Club in Singapore. There, Daphne worked closely with the Club’s shipowner and operator membership on their P&I and FDD claims. This has given Daphne invaluable insight from a client’s perspective which she carries with her in the conduct of her matters.
In the course of her contentious practice, Daphne regularly advises clients on options available before the commencement of proceedings. Daphne has also assisted clients in obtaining injunctive relief and other security-taking measures as available in relevant jurisdictions. More recently, Daphne has assisted clients to obtain interim injunctive relief from the English High Court for breach of an arbitration agreement by the commencement of winding up proceedings in Singapore.
Daphne has appeared before the Singapore courts and arbitral tribunals on a broad range of disputes. These include bill of lading and charterparty disputes, as well as disputes arising from collisions, the arrest of vessels (locally and in foreign jurisdictions), the supply and/or trading of bunkers, and commodity sale and purchase contracts. Daphne has also represented clients in proceedings under the Singapore Workmen’s Compensation Act.
On the non-contentious side, Daphne regularly advises on and assists with the drafting of bill of lading terms and conditions and bespoke charterparty clauses, such as the new BIMCO EEXI and CII Clauses. Daphne has also advised clients on the use of electronic bills of lading, and assisted clients with the drafting of documents for use with charterparties and the sale of bunkers on credit, and in ongoing charterparty negotiations.
Daphne is fluent in both English and Mandarin.
Notable Cases & Transactions
Successfully represented a Chinese intermediate charterer in seeking recovery of outstanding hire from their immediate charterer and in enforcing lien over sub-freights from end-voyage charterers.
Successfully acted for a palm oil trader and charterer in the arrest of a vessel arising from insolvent disponent owners’ breach of charterparty, and eventually obtaining a favourable level of recovery at just under 85%.
Successfully acted for a trade finance bank to enforce a letter of indemnity for delivery of cargo in Egypt without presentation of original bills of lading.
Successfully acted for a leading container line in obtaining a ship inspection order from the Singapore High Court.
Successfully acted for a leading container line against cargo interests in a lis alibi pendens application.
Successfully acted for bunker traders, container line operators, shipyards and other industry players in the arrest of vessels in Singapore, East Malaysia, West Malaysia and the United States.
Acted for a bunker trader in a dispute with a trade finance bank arising from the use of set-off agreements with trading counterparties.
Acted for shipowners and operators in investigations and claims against charterers and/or cargo interests arising from the shipment of undeclared dangerous cargo, abandonment or misdeclaration of cargo.