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Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II 1926 - 2022

Portrait of Sarah Allan


A partner in the London office, Sarah is a key member of the yacht team and wider shipping group. She has developed particular expertise in yacht-related matters and advises owners, managers and yards on contracts relevant to superyacht operations, including sale and purchase transactions, re-fit, yacht charters and management agreements. She also advises on yacht and superyacht claims and disputes, including casualties and disputes under such contracts. As a Spanish speaker, she works closely with her colleagues in the Madrid office, as well as the other international offices.

Sarah is an accomplished sailor and yachtmaster who has competed at international sailing events and worked on yachts. She has developed a practice in advising on matters relating to sailing regattas and racing incidents, including collisions. She also acts alongside the personal injury team in the event of more serious injury. Sarah is ranked by Chambers High Net Worth for her work on yachts and superyachts, where a client describes her as 'understanding the best interests of clients' and being 'capable of great things'.

With a background in shipping law, and having worked for an International Group P&I club, she is regularly instructed on a broad range of commercial shipping matters including charterparty and bill of lading disputes, and insurance claims and coverage disputes. Sarah also advises on regulatory issues, including crew issues arising under the Maritime Labour Convention.

Recent work highlights

  • Advising on the purchase of a new build, semi-custom superyacht from an Italian yard. This also involved working with the yacht managers to set up the ownership structure and drafting the finance agreements.
  • Advising owners and insurers on defending a crew claim for personal injuries which occurred on a round the world yacht race.
  • Acting for the owners in relation to a claim by cargo receivers for damage to steel coils secured for €900,000. Sarah worked with Penningtons Manches Cooper’s Spanish office to defend the cargo claims, and then pursued a claim against charterers under the time charterparty.
  • Instructed by the insurer and owner in relation to the total loss of a superyacht caused by fire involving fire investigation, limitation of liability and pursuing subrogated claims.
  • Instructed by a number of owners and charterers of superyachts to advise on issues arising out of both Covid and more recently the war in the Ukraine, dealing with questions of whether the force majeure provisions avail owners of their obligation under the MYBA charter.

Penningtons Manches Cooper LLP

Penningtons Manches Cooper LLP is a limited liability partnership registered in England and Wales with registered number OC311575 and is authorised and regulated by the Solicitors Regulation Authority under number 419867.

Penningtons Manches Cooper LLP