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What precautions should a UK shipmaster take, when holding a disciplinary hearing resulting in a seafarer’s dismissal, to protect the employer’s legal position?

The master should ensure: 

(1) that the hearing is conducted exactly as laid down in the Merchant Navy Code of Conduct; (2) that as the seafarer is found to have committed a (paragraph 9) serious breach and is being dismissed in consequence, he or she is formally advised of the finding as well as the sanction; (3) that the seafarer is given copies of all relevant statements made in the Official Log Book; and (4) that the seafarer signs an Official Log Book entry acknowledging receipt of those copies.

 

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Why is it so important to follow the dismissal procedures laid down in the Merchant Navy Code of Conduct?

What should an accused seafarer be asked to do when he or she is given a copy of Official Log Book entries?