Merchant Shipping Act, 1894

Power of courts to consolidate claims against owners, &c.

504. Where any liability is alleged to have been incurred by the [1] owner of a British or foreign ship in respect of loss of life, personal injury, or loss of or damage to vessels or goods, and several claims are made or apprehended in respect of that liability, then, the owner may apply in England and Ireland to the High Court, or in Scotland to the Court of Session, or in a British possession to any competent court, and that court may determine the amount of the owner’s liability and may distribute that amount rateably among the several claimants, and may stay any proceedings pending in any other court in relation to the same matter, and may proceed in such manner and subject to such regulations as to making persons interested parties to the proceeedings, and as to the exclusion of any claimants who do not come in within a certain time, and as to requiring security from the owner, and as to payment of any costs, as the court thinks just.

[1 Extended by 63 & 64 Vict. c. 32. s. 2.]