Civil Procedure Maritime

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Future Lost Wages Decision of Note by U.S. Fifth Circuit

The U.S. Fifth Circuit recently reversed and rendered a District Court’s finding of future lost wages so that it was based on statistical work life expectancy rather than Social Security retirement age. In the recent...more

Courts in New York and Singapore Reach Opposite Conclusions on the Validity of Interpleader Applications Arising out of the OW...

On 7 November 2014, OW Bunker A/S (“OW”), a global supplier and trader of marine fuel, filed for bankruptcy in Denmark. Further bankruptcies of OW subsidiaries and affiliates swiftly followed, including the bankruptcy of...more

Seventh Circuit Finds Admiralty Jurisdiction in Asiana Airlines Lawsuits

In litigation arising from the July 2013 accident of Asiana Flight 214 at the San Francisco International Airport, the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Seventh Circuit reversed the District Court's remand decision, holding that...more

Seventh Circuit: "Frivolous" Argument Saves Jurisdiction

The Seventh Circuit issued an important opinion by Judge Easterbrook today, Lu Junhong v. Boeing Co., No. 14-1825, a clump of cases that arose after an Asiana Airlines jet manufactured by Boeing struck a seawall while landing...more

Ninth Circuit Revives Tort Claims Initially Dismissed Under Economic Loss Doctrine Where Product Caused Damage to “Other Property”

On June 29, 2015, the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals, in CHMM LLC v. Freeman Marine Equipment, Case No. 13-35163 (D.C. No. 3:12-cv-01484-ST), reversed the District Court’s judgment in an admiralty case, holding that a vessel...more

Transocean/BP Settlement Ends Texas Law Insurance Dispute: What Are the Possible Future Implications?

A lesser known but interesting legal issue regarding the 2010 BP oil spill was whether an operator (BP) could recover insurance proceeds as an additional insured under its driller's (Transocean) insurance policies for...more

Crowley Executive Acquittal in Price Fixing Trial Highlights Importance of Evaluating Legitimate Defenses and Avoiding Costly Plea...

A federal jury’s recent acquittal of a shipping company executive charged with price fixing highlights the challenges and uncertainties the Antitrust Division of the Department of Justice (“DOJ”) faces when defendants force...more

Freeze, Ship – You’re Under Arrest: Former Warship Now Underwater Following Court Order

The Federal Court ordered that a former Royal Canadian Navy destroyer be released from arrest before trial, without bail, so the ship could be sunk by its owner to create an artificial reef near Vancouver. ...more

Is payment of time charter hire a condition? The Astra reconsidered.

In Kuwait Rocks Co v AMB Bulkcarriers Inc (The Astra), Flaux J determined that the obligation to make punctual payment of hire under an amended NYPE time charter, whether on its own or in conjunction with an anti-technicality...more

First Circuit Recognizes Uberrimae Fidei In Admiralty Context

The First Circuit recently examined, in the admiralty context, the doctrine of uberrimae fidei, a legal doctrine requiring that all parties to an insurance contract deal in good faith and fully disclose all material facts....more

A New Wave – Eleventh Circuit Rejects “Barbetta Rule,” Opts for Cruise Line Liability

What happens if a passenger gets sick on a cruise ship and the treating physician, employed by the cruise line, is negligent in caring for the passenger? Is the cruise line liable?...more

“OCEAN VICTORY” – Court of Appeal Decision

In Gard Marine & Energy Ltd v China National Chartering Co Ltd (Rev 1) [2015] EWCA Civ 16, the Appellant sub-charterers appealed the 2013 judgment of Teare J....more

Mainbrace - January 2015 No. 1

In this issue: - A Sea Change Sweeps over Congress: A Look Back and a Look Ahead - Shipping & International Trade Law (Second Edition 2015) - Congress Passes Coast Guard Bill in Waning Hours of 113th...more

5th Circuit Blocks Punitive Damages in Maritime Case

In McBride v. Estis Well Service, LLC, the federal 5th Circuit Court of Appeals determined that punitive damages are not available to seamen under the Jones Act or under general maritime law. In those cases, recovery is...more

Fifth Circuit upholds “seamen” exemption and dismisses “day-rate” FLSA collective action suit.

A wave of FLSA collective (class) actions have been filed against scores of marine shipping and towing companies in the Gulf States for violation of the FLSA. Specifically, these suits claim that the commonly used “day-rate”...more

When In Doubt, File the Limitation Complaint (Part III): The Test Is Reasonable Possibility

On December 3, 2014, the Fifth Circuit, in In re: RLB Contracting, Inc., No. 14–40326 (5th Cir. Dec. 3, 2014), concluded that an ongoing exchange of correspondence between counsel for a dredge involved in a maritime casualty...more

Fifth Circuit: No Overtime Pay for Crewmember Tankermen

On November 13, 2014, the U.S. Fifth Circuit Court of Appeals held in Coffin v. Blessey Marine Services, Incorporated, Case No. 13-20144, that individuals who loaded and unloaded tank barges as part of their duties as crew of...more

In re Application of Owl Shipping: Does § 1782 permit discovery to aid foreign arbitral proceedings?

The District of New Jersey has issued a recent opinion highlighting a potential resource for parties engaged in foreign arbitral proceedings – the use of 28 U.S.C. § 1782, which allows parties engaged in foreign proceedings...more

Fifth Circuit Refuses Application of Bright-Line Test in FLSA Seaman Exemption Dispute

On November 13, 2014, the Fifth Circuit handed down its opinion in Coffin v. Blessey Marine Services, Inc., No. 13-20144, 2014 WL 5904734 (5th Cir. Nov. 13, 2014). The opinion addressed several key factors related to the...more

New York Federal Court Holds That Arbitrator’s Undisclosed Serious Health Condition Is Not Ground for Vacatur

There are several differences between court litigation and international arbitration, but two in particular stand out. First, whereas the losing party at trial can bring an appeal, the losing party in an arbitration can only...more

Court Affirms FEMA’s Efforts to Implement Actions to Avoid Jeopardizing Listed Species

On October 23rd the Federal District Court for the Western District of Washington upheld the Federal Emergency Management Agency’s (FEMA) National Flood Insurance Program’s (NFIP) compliance with a 2008 reasonable and prudent...more

Fifth Circuit Maritime Case Will Set National Standard

In McBride v. Estis Well Service LLC, a divided Fifth Circuit sitting en banc held that punitive damages are not recoverable by an injured seaman or his heirs under the Jones Act or general maritime law of...more

Mainbrace - October 2014, No. 3

In This Issue: - Maritime Cybersecurity: A Growing Threat Goes Unanswered - Valuation in Maritime Chapter 11 Cases: Genco and “NAV” - Is the U.S. Prepared Legally and Operationally to Protect Its Arctic...more

Facing the looming economic threat: Third parties retain the right to intervene in threatened industrial action

Third parties have retained the recently acquired right to intervene to protect their interests in the face of threatened industrial action. In response to a recent dispute, the Coalition government amended the Fair Work...more

UPDATE: Punitive Damages for Jones Act Seamen are not “Pining for the Fjords, they’re Dead”!

On September 25, 2014, the en banc Fifth Circuit, in McBride v. Estis Well Serv., L.L.C., No. 12-30714 (5th Cir. Sept. 25, 2014), concluded in a brief opinion that the Supreme Court’s decision of Miles v. Apex Marine Corp.,...more

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