For the sixteenth consecutive year, Chambers USA for 2020 has ranked Freehill Hogan & Mahar in the top tier of maritime law firms with a nationwide practice. Chambers USA 2020 once again lists the firm in the top tier, where Freehill is joined by only one other firm. Chambers USA also named Peter Gutowski, Wayne D Meehan, Don P Murnane, Jr., and Gina Venezia as “Leading Individuals.”

Chambers USA’s profile of the firm states:

Highly respected maritime litigation boutique with expertise covering areas such as maritime protection and indemnity, casualty, cargo damage and demurrage claims. Represents a client base composed of shipowners and insurers, including all major P&I clubs. Expertise in maritime personal injury claims, workers’ compensation claims and occupational disease cases.

Strengths Clients describe the firm as “highly specialized in maritime law, providing great results for a reasonable price.”

Others acknowledge that the team members “all work well and seamlessly together to provide the customer with the highest level of professionalism and legal support.” 

Another source appreciates “their extensive knowledge of the subject matter,” adding: “They are thorough, efficient and provide clear advice.”

Work highlights Represented vessel owner Phoenix Bulk Carriers, in a case involving a breach of charter for cargo out of Venezuela being shipped by a governmental entity.

Notable practitioners

Don Murnane is noted for his abilities in vessel and marine terminal casualties. One client states: “Don’s experience in US flag vessels and military contracts has worked as a compass for us; he’s always able to identify the risks during decision-making processes.”

Gina Venezia represents clients in a broad range of maritime disputes at both trial and appellate level. She is sought out for her advice on sanctions compliance and further adept at handling mass casualties and charter party disputes.

With over 35 years of experience, Peter Gutowski is particularly expert in charter party disputes, representing a wide range of clients. He is also adept at handling cargo loss and damage and maritime casualties.

Wayne Meehan is a highly experienced shipping practitioner who is well versed in major shipping casualty cases including collision, fire and explosion. He also handles cargo claims and charter party disputes.

Chambers & Partners has been publishing rankings of U.K. attorneys since 1990 and began publishing Chambers Global in 1999, followed by Chambers USA in 2003. The Chambers rankings are the products of independent research carried out by Chamber’s researchers, including numerous interviews with clients and other law firms.