American Bar Association
General Committees: Admiralty and Maritime Law

General Committees:
Admiralty and Maritime Law

Letter from the Chair, Pamela Annette Palmer

Pam Palmer Welcome to the Admiralty and Maritime Law Committee! Whether you are a seasoned practitioner, a young lawyer or simply interested in the practice of admiralty law, you have come to the right place. We offer numerous resources for the admiralty practitioner, including monthly conference calls on leadership opportunities and breaking admiralty issues, a quarterly newsletter, CLE, and resources to assist you in landing your next job or client.

With our committee’s access to the ABA’s policymaking branch, we have been on the front lines of legislative issues impacting the maritime industry. We are also regularly called upon to evaluate requests for the ABA to submit amicus briefs to the U.S. Supreme Court on cases involving admiralty issues. Simply put, if you are a maritime practitioner or just interested in the practice, this is the place for you.

You can find us on the ABA TIPS AMLC page and on LinkedIn. If you have any questions or are interested in getting involved feel free to contact me at

Come check us out. We would love to hear from you.



Committee Programs, Meetings and Events

Upcoming ABA TIPS AMLC Events, Maritime Events and Committee Deadlines of Note:

October 1, 2015: CASTING OFF: An Introduction to Maritime Trades
Ft. Lauderdale Yacht Club

We encourage you to attend a luncheon and panel discussion on October 1, 11:30 a.m. to 1 p.m. at the Fort Lauderdale Yacht Club. The presenters will discuss the various roles and interplay among maritime professionals in the context of maritime law for the benefit of the Maritime Law Societies of the University of Miami and St. Thomas University Schools of Law. All are welcome! For information or to RSVP, email by September 20, 2015 ($35/Space Limited)

The distinguished panel will include:
-Bill Casey, Marine Surveyor, Harbor and Ocean Services, Inc.
-Christopher Karentz, Captain, S-E-A
-Bryan Emond, Marine Engineering Expert, S-E-A
-Michelle Otero Valdés, Maritime Attorney, Chalos & Co. P.C.
-Laura Sherrod, Marine Insurance, Atlass Insurance
-Larry Acheson, Marine Salvor, Tow Boat U.S. Ft. Lauderdale

AMLC Events at the 2015 ABA Annual Meeting in Chicago

Friday, July 31, 2015
8:30-10:00 am: Unsettling Issues with Mass Tort Settlements CLE
Swissotel, Chicago
Using the Deepwater Horizon oil spill litigation and the ensuing dispute over the settlement payment formula as a case study, this program will explore how and why settlement agreements do not always provide the final resolution that was anticipated. Panelists will discuss strategies, legal concepts, and practical issues to be considered when negotiating or litigating large scale settlement agreements.


  • Michael Daly – Moderator – Partner, Pierce Atwood LLP (Providence, RI)

  • Martin Davies – Admiralty Law Institute Professor of Maritime Law and Director, Maritime Law Center at Tulane University Law School (New Orleans, LA)

  • Douglas Albritton – Partner, Akerman LLP (Chicago, IL)

  • Theodore Tsekerides – Partner, Weil Gotshal & Manges, LLP (New York, NY)

  • Stephen J. Herman – Partner, Herman Herman & Katz, LLC (New Orleans, LA)

11:30 am-1:00 pm: Lunch at the Chicago Yacht Club
Please RSVP to Chris Hamilton and Pamela Palmer (

1:30 pm-3:00 pm: # Is ThisAdmissible? CLE

Swissotel, Chicago

3:30 pm: The Original Chicago Architectural Boat Tour
Trump Tower Chicago River

8:00 pm: Dinner with the AMLC and Business Litigation Committee
Bistronomic’s Grand Salon Room

Sunday, August 2, 2015
1:10 pm: Chicago White Sox v. New York Yankees

2014-2015 ABA TIPS AMLC Events:

February 6, 2015: ABA TIPS AMLC Fundamentals of Vessel Arrest and Attachment CLE

Houston, TX 77002

Vessels are often seized on short notice, with narrow time windows, heightening the need to "get it right" on the first try. This free, one-hour CLE focused on the substantive, procedural, and government requirements for arrest or maritime attachment of a vessel. The CLE featured private attorneys, professional custodians, and an insurance claims professional who provided an in-depth discussion of the topics, as well as practice advice and lessons learned.

Speakers included:

  • Richard Branca of Royston, Rayzor, Vickery & Williams, LLP

  • Raymond Waid of Liskow & Lewis

  • Alan Swimmer of National Liquidators & National Maritime Services

  • Rebecca Hamra of Charles Taylor PLC

The CLE was followed by a tour of the Port of Houston.

January 21, 2015: ABA TIPS AMLC Vessel Arrest Maritime Symposium 2015
Coral Gables, FL

The AMLC partnered with the Florida Bar Admiralty Committee to present this seminar which focused on the substantive,procedural,and government requirements for arrest of a vessel. The program featured private attorneys, professional custodians, and government agents (USMS) who provided an in-depth discussion of the topics, as well as practical advice and lessons learned.

Topics covered included:

  • Common Pitfalls of Yacht Arrests from the U.S.Marshall Service Perspective

  • The Role of the Substitute Custodian in the Arrest and Custody of the Vessel

  • Ethics of Yacht Arrests

  • Update on Supplemental Rules B, C and E of Admiralty and Maritime Claims

  • Update of Lozman Jurisdictional Issues

  • Legislative Statutory and Regulatory Updates

Speakers included:

  • Robert L. Gardana, Esq., Robert L. Gardana, P.A.

  • Lindsey Brock, Esq., Rumrell, McLeod & Brock

  • Glen Wilner, Assistant Chief U.S. Marshals Services

  • G. Robert Toney, National Liquidators & Maritime Services

  • Michelle Otero Valdes, Esq., Chalos & Co., P.C.

  • Michael McLeod, Esq., Rumrell, McLeod & Brock

  • Captain Alan S. Richard, Esq., Adjunct Professor, Florida State University School of Law

October 22, 2014: ABA TIPS AMLC Presentation of Selected Works from the Tulane Maritime Law Journal

New Orleans, LA

Speakers included:

  • Allison Fish, The Potential Application of 18 USC 1115 to Offshore Drilling Disasters: A Requiem for the Seaman's Manslaughter Act

  • Albert Farr, Federal Income Taxes and Liquefied Natural Gas (LNG) Marine Transportation: A Critique of the U.S. Owned, U.S. Flagged, Vessel's International Shipping Regime

  • David Friedman, A Court for Icarus: Defining Maritime Tort Jurisdiction in Aircraft Crash Cases

  • Bryan Kitz, Widening Gyre: The Seaman's Uncertain and Expanding Righ to Unearned Wages

  • Katherine Wiarda, The Problem's in the Proof: How Public Companies Can Prove Compliance with the Jones Act Vessel Citizenship Requirements for Eligibility in the U.S. Coastwise Trade

August 7, 2014: ABA TIPS AMLC Annual Meeting CLE: Admiralty Practice in the 21st Century: Navigating Which Circuit Splits Will Lead to a Supreme Court Review
Boston, Massachusetts

The presenters explored splits concerning the application of the Safe Port Doctrine and the Fire Defenses of the Carriage of Goods by Sea Act and the Fire Statute, as well as the removability of maritime cases. Attendees received the articles prepared by the speakers in conjunction with the writing competition for young lawyers sponsored by the ABA TIPS AMLC.

Speakers included:

  • J. Ben Segarra, Pirate Hunting in the Circuit Seas: Defending the Main Fleet against Judicial Buccaneers

  • Donald A. Mau, The Most Significant Appellate Circuit Splits in Admiralty and Maritime Law


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Modified by Daniel Chavez on September 18, 2015

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