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Boat lost at sea
The following excerpt is from the "International Convention on Salvage, 1989"
RIGHTS OF SALVORS
Conditions for reward
1. Salvage operations which have had a useful result give right to a reward.
2. Except as otherwise provided, no payment is due under this Convention if the salvage operations have had no useful result.
See also Article 13 "Criteria for fixing the reward" including:
1. The reward shall be fixed with a view to encouraging salvage operations, taking into account the following criteria without regard to the order in which they are presented below: (followed by a list of conditions)
2. Payment of a reward fixed according to paragraph 1 shall be made by all of the vessel and other property interests in proportion to their respective salved values. However, a State Party may in its national law provide that the payment of a reward has to be made by one of these interests, subject to a right of recourse of this interest against the other interests for their respective shares. Nothing in this article shall prevent any right of defence.
3. The rewards, exclusive of any interest and recoverable legal costs that may be payable thereon, shall not exceed the salved value of the vessel and other property.
The above is an excerpt only - here is the URL: