MAINBRACE: March 2020

To read the full text of the articles in the March 2020 edition of Mainbrace, please download the PDF.


Note from the Editor
by Thomas H. Belknap, Jr.

Happy (almost) spring! Every year seems to be a new adventure and a new challenge, and this year, on top of the dramatic new International Maritime Organization 2020 bunker regulations that have now come into force after much trepidation, we find ourselves watching as the shipping world (and everyone else) wrestles with the many market disruptions that have resulted from the global spread of COVID‒19. Read More »

MARPOL Annex VI Enforcement—Are You Prepared? 
by Jeanne M. Grasso and Kierstan L. Carlson

The United States has been aggressively enforcing compliance with the International Convention for the Prevention of Pollution from Ships for nearly 30 years. Enforcement actions have been brought against ship owners and operators across the industry, as well as against individual masters, engineers, shoreside personnel, and other corporate officers. Read More »

All Aboard! Major Shipping Lines Secure Antitrust Immunity for TradeLens Blockchain Agreement
by Jeremy A. Herschaft and Matthew J. Thomas

February 6, 2020, marked an important milestone for the implementation of blockchain technology in the container shipping sector, as the Federal Maritime Commission completed its review of an agreement among five major carriers to collaborate on a new blockchain platform called “TradeLens,” which aims to modernize the international logistics arena. Read More »

Analyzing Maritime (or Non-Maritime) Contracts and Practical Considerations for Litigation Strategy
by William R. Bennett, III, Charles S. Marion, and Anthony R. Yanez

In many civil disputes, the application of choice of law principles as well as the jurisdiction in which the lawsuit is filed can have a significant impact on the outcome of a case. This is especially true where one of the parties conducts business in the maritime industry and the other does not. Read More »

Carbon-Free Ships: The EVs of the Seas?
by Frederick M. Lowther

Much has been made of the future of electronic vehicles (“EVs”). Governments around the world are setting ambitious goals for EVs based on the notion that the vehicles themselves are carbon-free and thus a climate-friendly alternative to internal combustion vehicles. Read More »

Congress Acts on Major Maritime Programs in 2019 and Postpones Work on Coast Guard Bill
by Joan M. Bondareff and Stefanos N. Roulakis

We are in the middle of the two-year term of the 116th Congress. In 2019, Congress reauthorized and funded several maritime programs, described below. Impeachment and a busy Senate calendar have delayed the 2019 Coast Guard Authorization Act until the second session, which began on January 6, 2020. Read More »

Anatomy of a Marine Casualty Investigation
by William R. Bennett, III and Lauren B. Wilgus

Blank Rome’s maritime attorneys have represented clients in some of the largest maritime casualties in the last 20 years, including the Staten Island Ferry allision with a maintenance pier in New York, the blow out and eventual loss of the Deepwater Horizon drilling rig in the Gulf of Mexico, the sinking of the El Faro during Hurricane Joaquin, and the collision between the Navy Destroyer USS John S. McCain and the tanker ALNIC MC in the Singapore Strait. Read More »


Firm News & Announcements

Blank Rome is pleased to announce that Lauren B. Wilgus was elevated to Maritime partner, effective January 1, 2020, and that the Firm has welcomed a number of new lateral partners across its U.S. offices and practices since the new year. Read More »

Chambers Global 2020 Ranks Blank Rome Attorneys and Shipping Litigation Practice

Chambers Global 2020 recognized Blank Rome as a global leader in Shipping: Litigation–Global-wide, as well as Partner John D. Kimball as a leading shipping litigation attorney. Read More »

Diversity & Inclusion News

We share our In Memoriam for Judge Nathaniel R. Jones, who sadly passed away on Sunday, January 26, at age 93, as well as announce our 2020 Diversity & Inclusion Leadership Update and 2020 Corporate Equality Index ranking. Read More »

Safe Passage Blog

We invite our readers to dive into our archive of Mainbrace newsletters and maritime development advisories, as well as keep abeam with all of our current and upcoming analyses on trending maritime topics and legislation, in our Safe Passage blog. Read More »

© 2020 Blank Rome LLP. All rights reserved. Please contact Blank Rome for permission to reprint. Notice: The purpose of this update is to identify select developments that may be of interest to readers. The information contained herein is abridged and summarized from various sources, the accuracy and completeness of which cannot be assured. This update should not be construed as legal advice or opinion, and is not a substitute for the advice of counsel.