In admiralty law, there have to be rules for allocating ownership rights to property lost at sea. In

In admiralty law, there have to be rules for allocating ownership rights to property lost at sea. In the United States, the finder of an abandoned ship is generally awarded ownership, but in some cases the government takes possession of abandoned ships in its waters. Where that latter condition holds, a salvor (that is, one who salvages an abandoned ship) is usually entitled to a salvage award determined by the court. Does this practice of making awards to salvors encourage dishonesty, or does it attract an efficient number of resources into the business of searching for lost ships? Is the system of awarding complete ownership rights to the finder more or less efficient than the award-to-salvors system?

 

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