We represent vessel owners, operators, charterers, NVOCCs and their insurers in all types of casualty work, including crew, harbor worker and passenger personal injury and death cases, collisions, pollution, groundings, charter party disputes, salvage, cargo claim and sexual assault matters. We assist clients with vessel finance, stowaways, employment actions, marine insurance issues, customs work, drafting of bills of lading and charter parties, and a variety of transactional work, and we have obtained security for clients through arrest and attachment of vessels, cargo, bunkers and funds. We are recommended counsel by a group of international underwriters for occupational disease claims filed against shipowners. As such, we represent more than 50 shipowners in asbestos, benzene, hearing loss and other occupational and environmental disease litigation.

Our lawyers have practiced before all of the Federal District Courts in California and Florida, all Superior Courts in the San Francisco Bay Area and State Courts of Florida, numerous other Superior Courts throughout California, California Courts of Appeal, California Supreme Court, 9th Circuit Court of Appeals, U.S. Court of Appeals for the Armed Forces, Court of International Trade, 11th Circuit Court of Appeals, Florida District Courts of Appeal and U.S. Supreme Court. We have appeared before and worked with numerous state and federal agencies, including the U.S. Coast Guard, Department of Transportation, Department of Justice, Department of Labor, Federal Maritime Commission, Federal Maritime Administration, Customs and Border Protection Service (I.N.S.), Department of Agriculture, Water Quality Control Board, Environmental Protection Agency, Office of Workers’ Compensation Programs, California Department of Fish and Wildlife, The Port of Oakland and many others.

Representative Experience

  • Defending clients in a group of 38 asbestos claims refiled after dismissal from Asbestos Product Liability Multidistrict Litigation (MDL 875)
  • Defense of claims of misrepresentation and under the Racketeer Influenced and Corrupt Organizations Act (RICO)
  • Representing vessel interests in a claim for damage caused by an allision of a vessel with a freeway bridge
  • Obtaining recovery for the total loss of a yacht
  • Defending a group of clients in a crewman welding fume exposure case
  • Defending a container distributor in a manufacturing defect claim
  • Representing vessel interests in a claim for damage caused by surge from a passing vessel
  • Repatriation of both injured seamen and the remains of deceased seamen
  • Defending claims for damage to various types of cargo, including food-grade cargoes and industrial equipment
  • Representing a group of shipowners in claims by former merchant seamen for injury allegedly caused by benzene exposure
  • Representing various pleasure craft and engine manufacturers in design defect lawsuits
  • Seeking a maritime garnishment on behalf of a vessel owner for failure to pay freight
  • Defending claims of sexual harassment, wrongful termination, racial discrimination and age discrimination
  • Drafting charter parties and bills of lading for vessel interests
  • 24/7 emergency response and investigation of countless marine casualties, including collisions and allisions, groundings, water and air pollution incidents, personal injury and death, stowaways, vessel arrests, cargo damage and seizures, government detentions, and hull and machinery incidents