Admiralty and Maritime
The Chartwell Law Offices, LLP’s admiralty and maritime group has successfully handled nearly every type of marine-related dispute. Today, The Chartwell Law Offices, LLP continues to provide practical legal advice regarding marine insurance, personal injury and wrongful death, maritime commercial disputes, shipping and cargo claims, marina and boatyard liability, recreational watercraft issues, and environmental concerns.
- Marine Insurance
The Chartwell Law Offices, LLP services clients by handling all aspects of marine insurance. Through years of working with London and domestic marine insurers, our attorneys have developed a thorough understanding of the nuances in marine insurance practice and policy. Our experience spans from drafting the policy language to litigating coverage or third party claims in both state and federal courts.
Hull and machinery insurers call upon The Chartwell Law Offices, LLP to investigate, evaluate, adjust, and litigate their claims. Our attorneys have specific knowledge and experience with coverage issues and are often asked to provide legal analysis and opinion or respond to regulatory matters before the Florida Department of Insurance, in addition to prosecuting subrogation recovery actions.
The Chartwell Law Offices, LLP acts as legal correspondent for various protection and indemnity clubs from England, Scandinavia, and elsewhere across the world. We also regularly act on behalf of major domestic protection and indemnity insurers representing and defending their members and insureds in matters involving collisions, groundings, vessel sinkings, wreck removal, environmental damage, crew and passenger claims, stowaways, oil spills, and similar concerns.
- Maritime Personal Injury and Wrongful Death Litigation
The Chartwell Law Offices, LLP has successfully resolved every type of maritime personal injury and wrongful death claim, including complex matters involving multiple plaintiffs or catastrophic injuries. The Chartwell Law Offices, LLP’s trial lawyers frequently defend claims brought by crew members, maritime workers, or personal representatives pursuant to the Jones Act, General Maritime Law, Death on the High Seas Act, and the Longshoremen and Harbor Workers' Compensation Act. We are experienced in defending marine product manufacturers and suppliers, ranging from pleasure craft manufacturers to marine safety equipment and rigging manufacturers.
Over the years, The Chartwell Law Offices, LLP has developed a comprehensive understanding of crew claims in the United States through its repeated representation of vessel owners and operators in defense of Jones Act, maintenance and cure, and unseaworthiness claims. To assist our clients, The Chartwell Law Offices, LLP authored a desk reference manual specifically tailored for claims adjusters that outlines the relevant law regarding crew claims in the United States. Please ask for a copy.
- Maritime Commercial Litigation, Maritime Contracts, Vessel Arrest
The Chartwell Law Offices, LLP represents all maritime businesses in resolving disputes over ship construction/repair contracts, charter party contracts, creditor/debtor rights, maritime liens and ships' mortgages, bunker contamination claims, sales/use tax issues, and salvage claims. Our attorneys are skilled in drafting purchase and sale agreements, bills of lading, towing agreements, salvage agreements, dockage agreements, marine transportation agreements, as well as all types of marine service contracts.
Our maritime lawyers have experience drafting, executing, and foreclosing on Preferred Ship Mortgages or other maritime liens, in addition to facilitating vessel arrests throughout the Southeastern United States and the Caribbean. We are also well-equipped to handle the inherent factual, legal, and procedural complexities in claims under the Limitation of Liability Act on behalf of ship owners which can be beneficial in the aftermath of major marine casualties, groundings, fires, sinkings, wrongful death or significant personal injury.
- Cargo Claims
The Chartwell Law Offices, LLP represents clients involved in claims for lost or damaged cargo of all types. From the destruction of a multi-million dollar gantry crane during ocean transport, to the loss of containerized cargoes, our attorneys are adept at negotiating and litigating cargo claims, including claims for damage during loading and unloading, and intermodal transportation.
The Chartwell Law Offices, LLP’s proactive approach assists clients by establishing cargo claims handling procedures, drafting or revising bills of lading, dock receipts, and space charters. We similarly draft cargo policy language for cargo insurers, provide coverage opinions, as well as pursue subrogation and recovery actions on behalf of our cargo clients.
- Marinas and Boatyards
The Chartwell Law Offices, LLP assists marinas and boatyards by managing the inherent risks associated with such operations. In addition to defending claims for personal injury, wrongful death, and breach of contract, our attorneys draft dockage and storage agreements, giving acute attention to the critical issues of ship repairer’s liability, products liability, and environmental compliance. We also provide legal advice regarding employee status concerns such as application and scope of coverage under the Florida Worker's Compensation Act and the Longshore and Harbor Workers Compensation Act.
- Recreational Marine
The Chartwell Law Offices, LLP defends insurers, vessel owners, operators, and manufacturers against all claims related to recreational accidents involving property damage, injury, or death. Our attorneys are trained in handling losses arising from collision, grounding, sinking, fire, wake damage, bottom damage, heavy weather, diving, parasailing, water skiing, and/or other personal watercraft accidents occurring throughout the waters of Florida, the Southeastern United States, and the Caribbean.
- Maritime Environmental Law
The Chartwell Law Offices, LLP resolves the various legal challenges that arise from maritime environmental casualties such as oil spills, coral reef damage, and sea grass and sea floor damage. Our attorneys’ particular knowledge assists clients with environmental compliance management and response planning. With a focus towards preventative measures, The Chartwell Law Offices, LLP often drafts or updates environmental compliance plans, procedures, and manuals for marine-related businesses, vessel owners, or governmental entities.