Cancelling date (Laycan). This is an abbreviation for the "Laydays and Cancelling" clause in a charterparty. This clause establishes the earliest date, when the ship is required by the charterer, (e.g. "Laytime for loading shall not commence before . . .") and the latest date for the commencement of the charter (e.g. “ . . . and should the vessel's Notice of Readiness not be given before . . . ") when the charterers have the option of cancelling the charter.

Claused bill of lading. This is a bill of lading which contains clauses, stamped or written or typed, either in the body of the document or in the margin, the effect of the clauses being to qualify the statements and printed clauses in the bill of lading itself.

Clean ballast. A charterparty can include a clause requiring the vessel to arrive in a loading port with only "clean ballast". In many ports there are inadequate reception facilities for dirty ballast before loading and ships are restricted from discharging dirty ballast at sea.

Capacity plans. The capacity plan shows a longitudinal and transverse profile of the vessel, and diagrams of loadlines as well as the principal particulars, such as:

Consecutive voyages (Consecs or "CVs"). When a shipowner is contracted to carry a volume of cargo he can do so using any ships or one named ship. In this latter case, the named ship is chartered, usually on one charterparty, to proceed loaded from loading port to discharging port and to return in ballast to repeat the voyage consecutively until all the agreed cargo has been transported.

Cargo battens or sparring. In older style general cargo vessels, cargo battens are fitted fore and aft horizontally inside the ship’s frames in the holds and tweendecks at a regular distance of approximately 30 centimeters to prevent contact between the cargo and the frames or shell plating. The wooden planks are fitted to the frames by means of hooks, so that they can be removed. The cargo battens keep the cargo free from moisture or sweat, which may condense on the ship’s sides.

The cargo battens are not sufficient as dunnage and in many cases extra dunnage is required.


Certificate of free pratique. This is a certificate from the port-health-authorities that the ship is without infectious disease or plague on board and therefore permitted to enter port and to allow people to board and disembark.

Cesser clause. It is customary to insert a special clause in voyage charterparties, where the charterers' liability ceases as soon as the cargo is shipped and the advance of freight, deadfreight and demurrage in loading (if any) are paid, the owners have a lien on the cargo for freight, deadfreight, demurrage and general average contributions.

Clean bill of lading. The carrier is bound to deliver the goods in the same order and condition as when he received them into his charge. When the goods are received, the bill of lading is issued, on demand of the shipper, and this should state the description of the goods as received, including the apparent order and condition.

Cargo plan or stowage plan. In the regular liner trade it is customary to draw up a stowage plan, showing in different colours the part of the ship in which the various parcels have been stowed, stating at the same time marks and destination.

Custom of the port (COP). The word "custom" has a purely legal meaning and also a meaning connected with chartering practice and laytime. The meaning for lawyers is that it is a rule of conduct established by long usage over many years.