Practice Areas

Maritime and Transportation

Nicoll Black & Feig has a full service maritime and transportation practice, representing vessel owners and insurers in maritime litigation and a wide range of marine transactions. Our expertise, however, is not limited to traditional maritime issues: our firm provides highly capable representation to clients involved in all aspects of transportation, whether by land, sea, or air.

Our maritime and transportation practice group has well over 100 years of combined experience practicing law in this area. Nicoll Black attorneys include graduates of the U.S. Merchant Marine Academy and the U.S. Coast Guard Academy, former Navy JAG lawyers, and marine engineers. Our attorneys have spent time at sea working aboard a variety of commercial “blue water” vessels, fishing boats, Coast Guard vessels, and Navy ships. Our commitment to and experience in the maritime and transportation industry is unparalleled.

Maritime & Transportation Litigation

We have extensive experience in all aspects of maritime litigation, ranging from the initial investigation of marine causalities to appellate review. We have been selected as correspondent counsel for numerous protection and indemnity clubs, and have represented the owners and insurers of virtually every type of watercraft imaginable. Our lawyers have significant trial experience, and many of our lawyers have practical maritime industry experience as well.

Our maritime litigation track record is characterized by success. Drawing on the wide-ranging experience that is reflective of our broad admiralty practice, we have achieved favorable outcomes for our clients in the following matters:

  • Personal Injury Defense: Seaman, Longshore Worker, and Passenger
  • Wrongful Death Defense
  • Vessel Casualty: Collisions, Sinkings, Fires, Explosions, Container Losses & Other Casualties
  • Claims Brought By or Against the U.S. Government or State/Local Governments
  • Cargo Claims: Truck, Rail, Ship, Airplane
  • Salvage Claims, Towage Claims, Vessel Arrests, Rule B Attachment
  • Oil pollution and toxic contamination claims under OPA 90, CERCLA and state law
  • Container losses and damage
  • Chartering and charter disputes
  • Vessel detentions & seizures, crew repatriations, crew desertions
  • Representation of domestic and foreign governmental entities
  • White collar criminal defense related to alleged environmental crimes
  • Marine insurance coverage investigations, advice and litigation
  • Pleasure craft litigation
  • Limitation of Vessel Owner’s Liability
  • Cargo Subrogation


We routinely handle a full range of maritime commercial and transactional matters, including drafting of and advice on purchase and sale, ship construction and repair contracts, charter parties, crew contracts, contracts of carriage, bills of lading, towage agreements, as well as providing business organization advice and documentation.

Cargo Claims

Multimodal carriage of goods has brought significant change to the legal landscape of cargo claims, and as the industry has evolved, so have we. In addition to handling matters related to traditional maritime cargo losses, our attorneys routinely deal with cargo claims arising from air and land carriage as well. No matter where a cargo loss occurs, our attorneys are able to provide skilled and effective representation.