Like storms at sea, disputes and litigation in the shipping and maritime industries can be as dangerous as they are unpredictable. With generations of experience across the shipping and maritime industries, we are a trusted port in the storm.

Emergency Contact: 24-Hour Mobile Numbers 
Sean Houseal (843) 437-6620  or  Ryan Gilsenan (843) 847-8003

Our services range from immediate response and investigation of casualties, including personal injuries and death, pollution incidents, collisions, and cargo loss, to complex commercial litigation and dispute resolution, resolution of charter party disputes, and defending enforcement actions, grand jury investigations, and criminal charges. We also have particular experience representing clients in complex marine insurance claims. And with a deep knowledge of the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration regulations, our team is equally adept at solving problems and mitigating risks and exposure related to shoreside, over-the-road transportation casualties. When disputes cannot otherwise be resolved effectively, our team has substantial trial experience, having successfully tried numerous cases to verdict in both state and federal courts.

With offices in US and UK port cities including Charleston, South Carolina, Delaware, Los Angeles, Atlanta, London, Bristol, and Southampton, our team is positioned to respond quickly to our clients’ needs anywhere within our footprint.

Our clients include:

  • All Protection and Indemnity Clubs in the International Group
  • Cruise lines
  • Domestic and international marine insurers
  • Freight forwarders, non-vessel operators, and other logistics providers
  • Hull and Machinery underwriters
  • Importers and exporters
  • Major recreational boat manufacturers
  • Major steamship lines
  • Marinas and waterfront owners
  • Marine lenders
  • Shipowners and charterers
  • Shipyards
  • Towing companies
  • Yacht brokers

Protection & Indemnity Clubs and Shipowners

We serve as the Charleston correspondent for all of the world’s Protection & Indemnity insurers (“P&I Clubs”) in the International Group, who insure commercial cargo and passenger vessels calling at the Ports of Charleston and Georgetown, South Carolina. With offices in Georgia and North Carolina, as well as Mid-Atlantic states, our firm is positioned also to handle casualty and litigation matters arising in neighboring ports. Our emergency response team is on call and available 24/7 to respond to and investigate casualties and incidents of all types, including collisions, shipboard and dockside personal injuries, cargo damage, pollution and HAZMAT discharges, alleged safety violations, expanded Port State Control inspections, and other shipboard emergencies.  

Recreational Boating

For decades, our team has practiced extensively in the area of recreational boating, having participated in such seminal South Carolina cases as Tisdale v. Teleflex, Inc. and Young v. Tide Craft, Inc.  This area of our firm’s practice includes maritime products liability, warranty disputes, yacht finance and foreclosure, marina and boatyard disputes, yacht insurance coverage disputes, salvage matters, and owner/operator liability cases. Representative clients include Bertram Yacht, Inc., Boat US, Bombardier Recreational Products, Inc., Chubb, Concept Special Risks Ltd., MarineMax, Mercury Marine, RLI Insurance Co., Travelers, Viking Yachts, and Volvo Penta of the Americas, LLC.  Our recreational practice covers much of the Atlantic coast and inland lakes in South Carolina, North Carolina and Georgia. 

Our team members are actively involved in recreational boating industry organizations, such as the American Boat & Yacht Council and the National Marine Manufacturers Association. Our firm is also part of the National Marine Lenders Association’s Recreational Boating Law Network.

Lawyers on this team serve in leadership positions in regional and national maritime law organizations, including the Maritime Law Association of the United States and the Southeastern Admiralty Law Institute. We are also actively involved in South Carolina’s maritime community, including such organizations as the Maritime Association of South Carolina and the Propeller Club of Charleston.

Browse our Admiralty and Maritime Disputes and Litigation Lawyers and Professional Staff