Ryan J. Byrnes


Ryan J. Byrnes

Ryan Byrnes is a 2012 graduate of the Seton Hall University School of Law, where he was a Presidential Scholar and was published in the field of copyright law. While in law school, Mr. Byrnes served as a clerk for the Hon. Ned Rosenberg in the Superior Court of New Jersey and later at a boutique commercial litigation firm. Prior to joining Freehill Hogan & Mahar, Mr. Byrnes practiced for more than five years at a large Manhattan firm, where his practice included defense of toxic tort, occupational disease, NY Labor Law and construction litigation cases, including extensive practice within New York City Asbestos Litigation (NYCAL).

Mr. Byrnes joined Freehill Hogan & Mahar in 2018. He is involved in various areas of the firm’s practice and at all stages of litigation from pleadings through trial. His personal injury practice includes the defense of trucking and motor carriers, premises liability, Labor Law, Jones Act maritime, and asbestos and other occupational disease cases. He regularly attends ship inspections and on-board investigations in connection with Jones Act personal injury and other maritime-related matters. He assists in the representation of a national restaurant chain as to all general liability claims. He is also active in matters involving insurance coverage, the Defense Base Act, and the War Hazards Compensation Act.

Matthew J. Pallay

Matthew Pallay graduated from Ohio Northern University Claude W. Pettit College of Law with a Certificate of Specialization in Criminal Law before attending Tulane University Law School, where he earned his LLM in Admiralty With Distinction.

Matthew was a third generation longshoreman, prior to joining Freehill Hogan & Mahar, in New York harbor for nearly 10 years. As a longshoreman, he primarily handled various bulk and breakbulk cargo operations, as well as heavy lifts. Additionally, he handled vessel mooring, stowage, and discharge operations.

Matthew has been involved in all phases of the firm’s practice since he joined the firm in November 2015. He is primarily involved in the firm’s personal injury practice, including federal workers’ compensation, Jones Act, and third-party litigation defense. Matthew routinely appears in the New Jersey and New York state and federal courts, as well before the Department of Labor Office of Workers’ Compensation Programs and Office of Administrative Law Judges. Matthew regularly handles all aspects of litigation from initial evaluation and investigation to taking and defending the depositions of fact and expert witnesses, engaging in motion practice, and appearing for oral arguments.

Matthew frequently conducts and participates in vessel and terminal inspections, both domestically and abroad. His experience includes investigating personal injury matters, stowaways, drug smuggling, oil spills, engine room fires, vessel breakaways, collisions, allisions, and other marine casualties.

Mark F. Muller

Mr. Muller’s primary area of practice is the defense of maritime personal injury claims, including passenger, longshoremen and seamen cases in which he has over 30 years of experience. He also has defended numerous cases involving occupational diseases, such as those relating to exposure to asbestos and benzene. Mr. Muller has tried both jury and non-jury cases in New York State and Federal Courts and has argued appeals in both Federal and State appellate courts. He has lectured at various seminars on personal injury topics. Mr. Muller has received the highest AV preeminent rating from Martindale-Hubbell and has been consistently rated as a leading maritime attorney by publications such as Legal 500, New York Super Lawyers and The Best Lawyers in America Guide.

John F. Karpousis

John F. Karpousis has been practicing law for over two decades, joining Freehill Hogan & Mahar in 1996, where he has been a Partner since January 2002 and currently heads the firm’s Workers’ Compensation defense practice. He graduated with a B.A. from Rutgers University in 1990, and received his Juris Doctorate from Fordham University School of Law in 1993.

John has considerable trial experience, having tried both jury and non-jury cases and argued appeals in both federal and state courts of New York and New Jersey. He has tried over 40 cases before the United States Department of Labor, Office of Administrative Law Judges and Benefits Review Board. John is a published author and frequent lecturer on matters involving the Longshore Harbor Workers’ Compensation Act, and has taught several Continuing Legal Education seminars on Longshore Act matters to other attorneys. In addition to his LHWCA and Defense Base Act workers compensation practice, John works extensively in the area of maritime personal injury law, including the defense of 905(b) LHWCA claims, Jones Act claims, marine construction litigation, passenger vessel and other maritime/terminal liability, trucking and transportation related personal injury cases. He also handles other marine litigation including marine insurance coverage disputes and hull and machinery claims. In 2014, Best Lawyers in America, which has named him to their Best Lawyers list, reported that a client described John as exhibiting “a fierce passion,” “a very charismatic litigator with a keen sense of what the judge and jury want to hear” and “one of the firm’s most talented attorneys.” The Legal 500 named John as a recommended attorney for 2018 and 2019. Best Lawyers in America ranked him in 2018-2020 in the admiralty and maritime field.



Thomas M. Canevari

Mr. Canevari graduated with Honors from the United States Merchant Marine Academy in 1982 with an unlimited horsepower Third Assistant Engineer license for steam and motor vessels. He then worked for 6 years as a Development Test Engineer on gas turbine engines before joining the firm in 1989.

Mr. Canevari concentrates on marine personal injury and death cases, including the defense of occupational disease claims. He has represented shipowners in cases dealing with collisions, allisions, fire, engine damage and oil spill response, investigation and litigation. His background and experience on steam powered vessels provide Mr. Canevari with unique insight and expertise in defending marine asbestos claims.

Mr. Canevari has dealt with cases in numerous jurisdictions, including New York, New Jersey, Connecticut, Texas, Pennsylvania and Minnesota. He has been national coordinating counsel for asbestos matters for an international gas turbine manufacturer since 2004 and he represents the International Group of P&I Clubs’ Industrial Disease Subcommittee.

Mr. Canevari holds the highest AV preeminent rating from Martindale-Hubbell and has been ranked as a leading maritime attorney by such publications as The Best Lawyers in America Guide and Moffly Media.  Mr. Canevari was also received the 2017 Client Choice Award for New York in the field of Shipping and Transport Law. In 2019 Mr. Canevari was confirmed as an expert in maritime law by Euromoney’s International Trade & Shipping Guide.