Lawsuits

Trade Only follows developments in lawsuits that can have a significant effect on companies or sections of the worldwide marine industry.

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Laser sailboat designer sues for past royalties

At 84 and with an accomplished career crowned by his design of the Laser sailboat, Bruce Kirby says the last place he wants to devote his time is in a courtroom. But that’s where he could find himself after he filed suit in U.S. District Court in an attempt to claim past-due royalties from the…more

Marine law firm announces merger

Miami-based Houck Anderson, a maritime and admiralty law firm, said it merged with The Chartwell Law Offices LLP, one of the fastest-growing law firms on the East Coast. The merger became effective March 1. Houck Anderson is rated AV-Preeminent by Martindale-Hubbell. The firm is also named a Best Law Firm in America in Maritime Law…more

Federal judge dismisses Cup cat salvage claim

The salvage claim made by a San Francisco resident over the French America’s Cup World Series team’s 45-foot catamaran has been dismissed. Energy Team thanked Todd Tholke for “salvaging its vessel” in a statement released by Noah Hagey, the lawyer representing the team. U.S. District Judge Richard Seeborg dismissed the case ealier this month, noting…more

Lawsuit filed in boating death of Illinois boy

The family of a boy who was run over by a boat on the Chain O’ Lakes filed a lawsuit that alleges the boater and a passenger were recklessly partying before the fatal crash. The parents, two sisters and brother of Tony Borcia, 10, say the powerboat, called Purple Haze, was traveling so fast that…more

Harbormaster audit sought in moorings probe

Dozens of long-missing mooring blocks have landed the harbormaster’s office in Provincetown, Mass., at the center of a police probe and probably will result in an independent audit of its books. On Monday, town manager Sharon Lynn will recommend to the Board of Selectmen that the town undertake an independent audit of Harbormaster Rex McKinsey’s…more

California fisherman fined for illegal crabbing

A California commercial fisherman was ordered to pay $12,500 in fines for illegally catching crabs in a marine reserve off the San Mateo County coast, the district attorney’s office said Wednesday. Mark Russo, owner of the fishing boat Freeland, allegedly violated the California Marine Life Protection Act by setting crab traps in the Montara State…more

Court rules New York is not liable in capsizing

New York’s top court rejected damages claims against state inspectors who continually recertified a tour boat for a 48-passenger capacity before it overturned on an Adirondack lake in 2005, drowning 20 people on a fall foliage tour. The Court of Appeals unanimously ruled that the state generally isn’t liable for “the negligent performance” of government…more

Prosecutor assigned to BUI probe in Maryland

The boat crash involving Maryland Delegate Donald H. Dwyer is being investigated by a Howard County prosecutor in order to avoid a conflict of interest. The Republican delegate admitted drinking alcohol prior to the crash, according to the Baltimore Sun. The Anne Arundel County State’s Attorney Office referred the case to another jurisdiction more than…more

Florida dealer sentenced in BUI death

An Orlando boat dealer who was accused of piloting a boat while he was drunk and crashing, killing a 20-year-old and injuring four others, was sentenced to six years in federal prison last week. Mark David Watts, owner of Liquid Sports Marine, was charged with killing Shelby Harper, a former Amateur Athletic Union basketball star,…more

Top N.Y. state court weighs inspectors’ liability in tour boat disaster

State lawyers are urging New York’s top court to throw out the liability lawsuit against the inspectors who continually recertified a tour boat for 48-passenger capacity before it overturned on an Adirondack lake in 2005, drowning 19 senior citizens from Michigan and one Ohio resident on a leaf-peeping tour. Federal investigators afterward said the 40-foot…more

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