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Guidelines for Aspiring Full Membership

The LMAA is not an arbitral institution. Rather, as regards its arbitrating members, it is simply an association of practising arbitrators, not an administering body. Accordingly, its reputation – and indeed that of London as the prime maritime arbitral centre – rests entirely on the competence and skill of its members. The Committee is conscious of the need to expand full membership, to renew itself, and to provide for the future. At the same time, the Committee has an obligation to protect and enhance the Association’s standing by ensuring that all new aspiring full members possess the necessary ability, knowledge and experience to practice as a maritime arbitrator.

Those applying for aspiring full membership should demonstrate an intention to practise as a maritime arbitrator on a regular basis and fulfil certain of the salient requirements for Full Membership (including independence from competing commercial activities), and be seeking further appointments in LMAA arbitrations to enable them to demonstrate the experience criteria for Full Membership.

It should be noted that the Aspiring Full Members list is intended (and to be perceived) as an upward escalator to promote the development of AFM’s practices towards full membership, though the responsibility remains with the AFM to develop their practice. As such, the Association will look to monitor the development of those practices and expect the AFMs to provide regular updates on the numbers of appointments, hearings etc.

Applicants should:

(i) have been engaged for at least 10 years in a responsible position or positions in one or more areas of the shipping industry, either commercial, technical or legal;

(ii) have a basic knowledge of English law relating to contract and tort;

(iii) have a good knowledge of English law relating to shipping, arbitration practice and procedure;

(iv) demonstrate a recent and increasing degree of involvement in working with other LMAA members as a member of London maritime arbitration tribunals;

(v) demonstrate an ability to draft reasoned awards in maritime disputes subject to English law. It is required that the applicant should submit at least one reasoned award which the applicant has drafted; and

(vi) show a willingness to uphold and promote the principles and values of the Association.

It should be noted that for those applicants who do not have an English legal qualification it is usually a requirement that the applicant should be a Fellow of the Chartered Institute of Arbitrators.

Whilst the focus is on maritime arbitrations under the auspices of the LMAA, consideration may also be given to other relevant commercial and arbitration experience.

Where the applicant is not able to fulfil all of the above guidelines, it could be helpful to the applicant to seek guidance from the Association before submitting a formal application.

The Committee will consult members of the Association before making a decision on any application.

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