Singapore Shipping Firm’s Lawyers Head Out to Sea

Singapore shipping firm’s lawyers head out to sea
Joseph Tan Jude Benny wants lawyers to get first-hand marine experience
This article appeared in The Shipping Times 20 Sept 2000
By Ann Toh

[SINGAPORE] One of Singapore’s largest shipping firms, Joseph Tan Jude Benny, has devised an innovative training programme to arm its lawyers with first-hand marine experience to better appreciate these aspects when handling legal cases.

In a tie-up with PSA Corp’s marine services unit, PSA Marine, lawyers from the 20 strong shipping and admiralty practice accompanied pilots and tug masters from PSA Marine out to sea to better appreciate aspects of piloting and tug operations in their legal work.

Joseph Tan Jude Benny recently made news as Singapore’s first law firm to set up a branch in the Greek shipping hub of Piraeus. The firm is ranked among one of the region’s top shipping practices by international legal guides such as The Chambers Global Directory and The Asia Pacific Legal 500.

Senior partner Jude Benny said the firm’s latest effort is consistent with with its goal to promote Singapore as a centre for the judicial review of admiralty and shipping cases and transactions.

He added: “There is a need to constantly teach and upgrade the level of knowledge of the younger lawyers coming into the shipping practice. We feel a programme such as this is useful and interesting. The lawyers have learnt things that cannot be found in textbooks.”

Joseph Tan Jude Benny was established in 1998 as a two-man partnership. Today it is one the largest specialist shipping practices with 25 lawyers. The Singapore practice had recently been on the expansion path, taking in several senior members of the shipping and admiralty bar, including Danny Chua, and Mohamed Goush Marikan.

Since 1998, it has also acted in a number of high-profile cases, including its representation of The Couseteau Society in the sinking of The Calypso, the first collision case to go on trial in Singapore in 40 years. It also represented PGS Shipping in its successful suit against the ship Tai He for severing the underwater cables that were being towed by its oil explorer vessel, The Nordic Explorer.