Article of Agreement (AOA) is a tri-party agreement. Article of agreement (AOA) with the crew shall be in the prescribed form and should be dated at the time of the first signature and shall be signed by the owner/manager before any seamen signs it. It is a legal document agreed and signed between the owner and or master or its agent and the seamen who are being employed by the owner.
As per MS act 1958, The master of every Indian ship except a home trade ship of less than 200 GT, shall enter into an agreement with every seaman whom he engages, in, and carries to sea as one of his crew.
Contents of Article of Agreement
- Online submission number & date
- Name of the ship
- Details of employee
- Particulars of ship owner’s / Agent
- Information of Ship
- Details of seafarer
- Details of Employment
- Repatriation details
- Additional terms and condition of employment (where applicable)
- Confirmation of the Agreement by the seafarer
- Confirmation of the shipowner or ship owner’s agent
- Signature with date and stamp of shipowner/ship owner’s agent (on-shore, off-shore)
- Signature of the seafarer with a date (on-shore, off-shore)
- Signature with date and stamp of the master
- Remarks if any by shipowner/ship owner’s agent/shipping master
- Annexure to Article for the employment of seafarer, contractual clauses/term and conditions
There are 5 originals and 3 photocopies which would ultimately remain with persons/organizations as detailed below.
- Master on board the ship
- Shipping Master (on concluding employment and settlement of wages)
- Shipowner / Ship owner’s agent – photocopy of shipping master)
- Shipping Master on commencing employment
- SPFO (Seaman’s Provident fund organization) on concluding employment
- SWFS (Seafarers welfare fund society) on concluding employment
- Employer / Employer’s agent – photocopy
All the above shall be uploaded on the DGS website online immediately before submission as aforesaid. In case there is any dispute between the owner or agent & the master of the ship & a seaman such a dispute shall be referred to the port in India at which the seaman is to be finally discharged.
The agreement must record the requirement of advance and allotments and other stipulations not contrary to law. The master shall provide a copy of the agreement to the members of the crew. Any change in a crew agreement is only valid if it is made with the consent of all the parties concerned and the same is to be attested by the shipping master in India or by an Indian consular officer outside India.
Lastly, it should be signed and stamped by an authorized signatory by the company person to authenticate it and also signed by the seafarer.