News & Events

Our Impact

April 29th, 2017

NBF attorney Curt Feig participated as a crewmember in the 2017 Newport to Ensenada sailboat race from April 28 – 29, 2017.

April 29th, 2017

NBF attorney Rivers Black attended The Greater New Orleans Barge Fleeting Association’s (GNOBFA) 35th River and Marine Industry Seminar on April 25-28, 2017 in New Orleans, LA.  GNOBFA’s annual seminar is one of the premier seminars in the marine industry.

April 21st, 2017

On April 21, 2017, NBF attorney Pegeen Mulhern attended the Northwest Marine Trade Association’s (NMTA) sixth annual auction, which benefitted the Clean Boating Foundation and Fish Northwest.  NBF is pleased to provide its support to this event once again.

March 18th, 2017

NBF attorney Pegeen Mulhern attended the Seattle Propeller Club’s Maritime Gala on March 18, 2017. Nicoll Black & Feig was a proud sponsor of this annual event, which helped support the works of Seattle Sea Scouts, Seattle Maritime Academy and Youth Maritime Training Association. 

February 7th, 2017

On March 3, 2017, Salish Seas Expeditions will be hosting a  20 Years of Discovery Seafood Bash. NBF attorney Pegeen Mulhern has recently joined the board of directors of this 501(C)(3) nonprofit corporation that offers  science programs to middle school and high school students throughout Puget Sound. Salish Seas’  mission is to inspire youth to connect with the marine environment through boat-based scientific inquiry and hands-on learning, instilling curiosity, confidence, and critical thinking. Salish Sea Expeditions does this by offering  students in grades 5-12 a unique combination of powerful place-based learning and hands on exploration.  For more information visit their website at


We hope that you might join  Pegeen and other Salish supporters at the Seafood Bash as Salish celebrates 20 years of meaningful learning expeditions and the impact those experiences have had on students from our region and beyond. Not only will the event be an opportunity to look back on 20 years of programs, but it will also be an opportunity to share Salish’s vision for the next 20 years and learn some of the ways the organization is growing to meet the critical need for meaningful STEM and maritime education.


One very exciting announcement is Salish’s recent purchase of the Elettra III,  an 85-foot steel hulled motor vessel originally commissioned by the Marconi Marine Company as a maritime technology demonstration vessel. Salish is working closely with the U.S. Coast Guard as they re-fit the Elettra III to be licensed as a USCG Subchapter T Small Passenger Vessel. In addition to updating the vessel for compliance and safety, Salish is outfitting the vessel with the highest quality scientific and educational instrumentation, creating fully-networked classroom and lab spaces, and deployment arrangements.  This vessel will be an important platform for marine science and maritime training in Puget Sound.


The details on the Seafood Bash are as follows:


When: Friday, March 3, 2017 at 6:30 pm

Where: Museum of History & Industry (MOHAI)

            860 Terry Ave N, Seattle WA, 98109

Tickets: $150 ($70 tax-deductible)


If you would like to join the celebration please  contact Pegeen Mulhern at

January 27th, 2017

NBF hosted its 9th annual Mardi Gras Party at the J&M Cafe in Seattle on January 26, 2017 in conjunction with the Marine Insurance Association of Seattle (MIAS) week of activities. The event was exceedingly well attended and fun.

January 16th, 2017

NBF attorney Chris Nicoll authored an article entitled “WDTL Amicus Committee Tackles Personal Jurisdiction,” for the Winter 2016 Defense News published by the Washington Defense Trial Lawyers Association. (See pages 9-10, 12 of linked .pdf)

January 13th, 2017

NBF is pleased to announce an important victory for its client in an intellectual property matter. In Hempton v. Pond5, Inc., No. 3:15-CV-05696-BJR, 2016 WL 6217113 (W.D. Wash. Oct. 25, 2016), reconsideration denied, No. 3:15-CV-05696-BJR, 2017 WL 132453 (W.D. Wash. Jan. 13, 2017), plaintiff Gordon Hempton sued Pond5, Inc. for copyright infringement. Pond5 operates a website that allows artists and other media owners to upload digital media such as video, images, music and sound effects, and customers to download the media by purchasing a license that allows its use. Hempton, a nature sound recordist, alleged that his work was stolen and illegally uploaded to the Pond5 website. He alleged that Pond5 was liable for copyright violation for hosting the material on its website and issuing licenses to it. He claimed that he had sustained significant damages. He filed suit in the U.S. District Court for the Western District of Washington.


NBF attorneys Larry Altenbrun and Curt Feig defended the lawsuit on behalf of Pond5. They filed a motion for summary judgment seeking dismissal under the Digital Millennium Copyright Act (“DCMA”), which creates certain safe harbors for service providers who satisfy certain statutory requirements, including the removal of infringing content upon notice. In a detailed decision from Judge Rothstein, the court granted Pond5’s motion and held that it was entitled to protections under the DMCA. The decision includes important discussions about several elements of the DMCA safe harbor defense.


The Hempton v. Pond5 matter is another successful example of Nicoll Black & Feig’s growing intellectual property practice. We are regularly appointed, by companies and their insurers, to defend companies and individuals accused of various intellectual property violations.

December 20th, 2016

In December, 2016, NBF attorneys Chris Nicoll and Noah Jaffe prepared and filed two amicus curiae briefs with the Washington Supreme Court on behalf of the Washington Defense Trial Lawyers Association. The first was filed in Noll v. Special Electric Co., No. 91998-4, and concerns the proper test for specific personal jurisdiction in a case involving a manufacturer of a component product that was marketed in Washington by the manufacturer of the end product. The case focuses on whether a component part manufacturer can be subject to jurisdiction in a state where its product ended up even if the component manufacturer was unaware that the end product manufacturer was marketing the product in the forum state. Chris and Noah teamed up again to author and file an amicus brief for the Washington Defense Trial Lawyers Association in Swank v. Valley Christian School, No. 90733-1, analyzing in detail the case against exercising specific personal jurisdiction over an Idaho doctor sued in Washington for care he rendered to an Idaho patient in Idaho, but who later traveled to Washington where he was injured and died. Both cases provided NBF with an opportunity to add to the debate about specific personal jurisdiction that has been reignited by recent decisions of the United States Supreme Court.


December 2nd, 2016

NBF attorney Chris Nicoll attended the 132nd Annual Dinner of the Association of Marine Underwriters of San Francisco and also attended various related events in the Bay area.