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Richard Williams is a visiting Professor at the School of Law, Swansea University and lectures on the LLM programme. He was formerly a senior partner with Ince & Co, a leading City law firm specialising in shipping and related matters. In practice he specialised in charterparties and bills of lading and was regularly recognised in the professional press as one of London’s leading practitioners. For many years he was Head of the firm’s Chartering and Dry Shipping Group and he retains a consultancy position with his former firm. Throughout his career he has been involved not only in the litigation of individual cases but also in the development of policy and documentation within the industry both for clients and international industry bodies and regularly advised various UN Agencies and other international bodies in relation to industry–wide issues and the drafting of standard documents. He was also recently appointed to serve on the Rotterdam Rules Consultative Committee, which was edtablished by the UK The Department for Transport. 

He is a frequent speaker at conferences and seminars around the world. When in practice he took a keen interest in professional training and continues to retain this interest. 

He is co-author with Patrick Griggs, ex-president of the Comite Maritime International, of 'Limitation of Maritime Liability', 4th ed (2005, LLP Ltd), Gard Guidance on Maritime Claims and Insurance, (Rodendahls, 2014) and has published many articles and book chapters on various aspects of charterparties and bills of lading.

For Professor Williams' Research Record, click here

Areas of Expertise

  • Charterparties
  • Bills of lading


  1. The Overall Impact of the Rotterdam Rules on the Liability of Multimodal Carriers and their Subcontractors. In Carriage of Goods by Sea, Land and Air: Unimodal and Multimodal Transport in 21st Century. (pp. 217-231). Informa.
  2. The Liability of Charterers for Marine Pollution. In Pollution at Sea: Law and Liability. (pp. 191-204). Informa.
  3. The Rotterdam Rules: winners and losers. Journal of International Maritime Law, 191-209.
  4. Transport Documentation-The New Approach. In A New Convention for the Carriage of Goods by Sea-The Rotterdam Rules. (pp. 190-224). Lawtext.
  5. The Impact of Deviation on Contracts of Affreightment'. In The Evolving Law and Practice of Voyage Charterparties. (pp. 289-306). Informa.

See more...


  • LAMM02 Charterparties: Law and Practice

    This is a module designed to give an insight into both the legal and commercial relevance of charterparties. The lectures will consider the legal principles which are relevant in relation to charterparties generally and also in relation to specific types of charter and will consider how such principles are evolving in response to market pressures. The module will also look at the relationship between charterparties and the other common contracts relating to the use of a ship and the carriage of goods.


  • Carrier's Liability under the Rotterdam Rules - A Guide for Reforming Chinese Maritime Code (current)

    Student name:
    Other supervisor: Mr Richard Williams
    Other supervisor: Prof Baris Soyer
  • 'Legal issues Concerning Delivery and Redelivery of the Vessel in Time Charterparties.' (awarded 2019)

    Student name:
    Other supervisor: Mr Richard Williams
    Other supervisor: Prof Baris Soyer