Legal Opinion – Employment in Coastal Ferries

Manolis EglezosPartner, Manolis Eglezos & Associates

Where distance between ports is less than 30 miles, a separate collective agreement applies for crew employment on vessels performing such itinerary.

Further, the master has the right to terminate the contract of a seafarer at any time. In such a case the seafarer is entitled to dismissal remuneration.

On the other hand, the seafarer is entitled to terminate the employment contract, if a severe breach of the duties of the master towards the seafarer is claimed to have taken place. Delay in the timely payment of the seafarer’s salary is a severe breach which justifies termination of the contract.
Supreme Court Judgement no 871/2018, Presiding: P. Zontanou, Rapporteur Judge: K. Pittaras, Attorneys at law: Th. Tsinoukas, P. Chiotellis, Maritime Law Review vol. 46, p. 81.

NOTE: Greece, with a very long coastline (14th in the world), due to its many islands, is since antiquity dependent on sea transport to connect the population and carry goods. Depending on whether the proximity is more or less than 30 miles, a different collective agreement applies. To test which agreement is applicable, the distance between sailing and destination port is taken into account.

The legal column was written by Manolis Eglezos, Attorney at law, Manolis Eglezos & Associages Law Firm, Attorneys at Law and Consultants