Max Lemanski

Partner

A well-known energy and shipping litigator, Max has broad experience representing clients in the offshore sector and works with many of the firm's oil and gas clients, with a particular focus on offshore contractors and international shipowners.

Max is the co-head of our market leading FPSO team and Max's cases include a number of complex, high-value FPSO disputes involving detailed technical analysis, quantum issues and delay and prolongation claims. He is also an expert in the LNG/FLNG field.   

On the maritime side, Max has considerable experience working with owners of offshore support vessels as well as owners/charterers involved in the carriage of oil and gas by sea.  Clients value his considerable experience and expertise, which span the full spectrum of dry shipping.   

Max's work includes non-contentious contract negotiation, working on EPIC, construction and conversion contracts, time charters and refund guarantees.


Max Lemanski is an eminent lawyer: technically excellent, pragmatic, shrewd and resolute. He brings a breadth of experience to provide valuable insight, and never loses focus on what he and his clients need to achieve.

Legal 500 UK 2020

Expertise

  • Max has experience in drafting and litigating EPIC contracts (and all of their different permutations, depending on the nature of the project).  This includes:

    • major LCIA arbitration proceedings relating to substantial refit and refurbishment contract for an FPSO vessel (including issues such as termination rights, critical path delay, prolongation claims, the variations regime and scope of work).
    • negotiating detailed EPIC contract terms (including advising on issues such as step-in rights, termination provisions, warranty provisions, limitations on liability and knock-for-knock clauses, design responsibility, transfer of title, subcontracting and ECAs).
  • Max is an expert in the FPSO field and forms part of the firm's highly specialist, market-leading team in this field.   FPSO projects that Max has worked on include the Atlanta, Knarr, Kraken, Marlim and Libra projects. 

    Max's experience includes:

    • major LCIA arbitration proceedings relating to substantial refit and refurbishment contract for an FPSO vessel (including issues such as termination rights, critical path delay, prolongation claims, the variations regime and scope of work)
    • issues relating to late arrival at the field, including liquidated damages for delay and liability for spread costs 
    • issues relating to hook up and acceptance tests (and consequently payment of hire and at what rate) 
    • late delivery of a new build FPSO from a Chinese shipyard 
    • negotiating detailed EPIC contract terms (including advising on issues such as step-in rights, termination provisions, warranty provisions, limitations on liability and knock-for-knock clauses, design responsibility, transfer of title, subcontracting and ECAs) 
    • advising on contract terms with field operators (bareboat charters, operations and management agreements) 
    • production problems, including interpretation of bonus/malus contract provisions and impact on adjustments to daily base hire 
    • warranty claims
    • decommissioning
       

    Max is the chief editor and contributor for the firm's specialist bulletin for those involved in floating production, Well Connected.  He regularly gives talks and bespoke seminars in relation to FPSOs.  Examples of topics covered include:

    • "Legal Considerations for FPSO Projects" 
    • "Who bears the risk of shut in?"
    • "Delays in Acceptance at Location"
    • "Acceptance Tests"
    • "Acceptance – Back to Back deliveries"
    • "Fitness for Purpose"
  • Max also has expertise in the LNG field.   

    Examples include:

    • Max advised a lead LNG shipowner bidding on the Yamal LNG project (advising on both the terms of their shipbuilding contracts with the proposed yard, and also the charter terms with Yamal) 
    • Regular ad hoc advice to leading IG Clubs and their members in relation to LNG related issues
    • Advising a new start-up in relation to an LNG bunkering barge
    • Max is a regular contributor to the firm's specialist newsletter, Well Heeled. He has also contributed to Trade Winds (see his article published on 14 November 2014, "Standard-form LNG voyage charters are here to stay") 
       

    Max is well known on the speaker circuit; examples of topics at recent conferences/seminars include:

    • “Floating Regas & Storage Conference - Unlocking New Markets and Monetizing Small Scale LNG with FSRUs and Other Floating Import Solution”
    • “Examining LNG vessel financing issues and contractual implications”
    • "Legal issues arising out of LNG COAs"
  • Max has considerable experience working with owners of offshore support vessels as well as owners/charterers involved in the carriage of oil and gas by sea.  

    Clients value his considerable experience and expertise, which span the full spectrum of dry shipping, including charterparty disputes (including time, voyage and bareboat charters), shipbuilding contracts, refund guarantees and ship management agreements.  Max has advised on issues such as free pratique, laytime and demurrage, off-hire, termination, available market, delivery/redelivery, crew negligence, safe-port, detention due to drugs smuggling, cargo contamination, cargo claims, equipment breakdown and consequential loss issues.  

    Specific examples include:

    • advising an international tanker owner as to disputes arising out of previous cargo residue and their impact on subsequent cargo/voyages
    • assisting owners of tanker detained by the Australian Maritime Safety Authority and in particular on subsequent loss of hire claims
    • various demurrage claims relating to the validity of notices of readiness given by owners of oil tankers 
    • acting for Korean shipowners in relation to a number of termination of charter disputes, including detailed analysis of the available market for assessment of damages
    • advising on charter disputes arising out the various Supplytime forms (including purported termination disputes)
    • acting on unpaid hire/expenses disputes in relation to various offshore support vessels for various owners
    • acting for owners in various towage disputes
    • acting in relation to various high-value cargo contamination claims
    • assisting owners with lien issues arising in relation to unpaid hire
    • acting for owners in relation to an offshore construction project dispute, including unpaid hire and unfinished work issues
       

    Max regularly gives in-house talks to shipowners and their P&I/FD&D Clubs on a wide range of shipping topics.