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THE WEST OF ENGLAND SHIP OWNERS MUT. INS. ASSN. V.

August 5, 1993

THE WEST OF ENGLAND SHIP OWNERS MUTUAL INSURANCE ASSOCIATION (LUXEMBOURG)
v.
McALLISTER BROTHERS, INC. v. McALLISTER TOWING AND TRANSPORTATION CO., INC. and MASTERS OF THE TUGS "JOHN DOE" and "JANE DOE"



The opinion of the court was delivered by: BY THE COURT; HARVEY BARTLE, III

 Bartle, J.

 August 5, 1993

 This case involves a dispute over the alleged failure of defendants to pay certain premiums or calls arising out of a maritime insurance contract.

 
With respect to any admiralty or maritime claim in personam a verified complaint may contain a prayer for process to attach the defendant's goods and chattels ... to the amount sued for, if the defendant shall not be found within the district.

 On July 26, 1993 the Court denied the motion of McAllister to vacate the attachment because the defendant was not "found" within the Eastern District of Pennsylvania, as that term is defined under the Rule. Defendant has now renewed its motion to vacate, on a ground not previously raised.

 In support of its renewed motion, defendant alleges that an arbitration proceeding was commenced prior to the attachment, and that the law precludes the use of maritime attachment where an arbitration proceeding is pending. The relevant facts are not in dispute.

 In January, 1993 the parties submitted to arbitration certain disputes over payment of premiums or calls under maritime insurance policies, and appointed Mr. Peter Gross, Q.C. as sole arbitrator. No disputes were ever submitted to Mr. Gross because the parties were able to reach a settlement in May, 1993. The written settlement agreement provides, in relevant part:

 
WHEREAS the parties now desire to settle their differences in accordance with the terms and conditions of this Agreement.
 
Now therefore the parties agree as follows:-

 . . .

 
10. The parties hereto agree to submit all disputes howsoever arising out of the entry and/or of this Agreement to arbitration before Mr. P. Gross QC but if for any reason Mr. Gross is unable or unwilling to act, a new arbitrator will be appointed by agreement between the parties hereto, or failing their agreement, but the then secretary of the London Maritime Arbitrators Association at the request of one or both of the parties to this agreement.

 To date, no claims under the settlement agreement have been submitted for arbitration to ...


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