About Shearwater Law

With the shipping and marine transport industries seeing unprecedented changes and challenges, we felt it was time to forge a new name that is reflective of our forward-thinking, committed legal practice - Shearwater Law.

At Shearwater Law, we understand the immense contribution that the shipping industry makes to the modern world.

From the food we eat to the appliances we use, the shipping industry underpins our lives.

But, as a dynamic and interrelated, global industry, the shipping industry and its stakeholders face myriad legal challenges, where claims are often complex  and high value. Simply put, there is a great deal at stake.

It is those legal challenges that Shearwater Law is here to solve.

And, with a wealth of real-world, shipping industry experience and an impressive roster of solicitors and barristers on board, Shearwater Law is adept at managing complex cases and achieving successful resolutions.

Shearwater Law may be a new name but its team of lawyers have been giving trusted advice to the industry for many years.

So, just as the shipping industry supports the world - Shearwater Law supports the shipping industry.

Our services

From the transport of dry bulk and liquid cargoes to containers and the leisure industry, the world’s seas and oceans are home to myriad activities.

And, where there is any form of activity, there is risk which can be ameliorated with good commercial legal advice either at contract stage or when disputes arise.

Here at Shearwater Law, we offer a range of services to support the activities of the maritime, shipping and transport industries. Our services include:

  • Charterparties.
  • Cargo and bills of lading.
  • Accident and injury.
  • Admiralty: Casualty.
  • Admiralty: Salvage and wreck.
  • Sanctions.
  • Shipping and commercial contracts.
  • Insurance coverage.
  • Regulatory.
  • Sale, purchase and new builds.
  • Commodities - sale and purchase disputes and contractual issues.

Our team specialises in commercialy attuned advice and dispute resolution, meaning you will benefit from in-depth, tailored expertise.

Our sectors

Carrying 90% of the world’s trade, millions of cruise passengers each year, fishing vessels of all varieties, countless ferries and short voyages plus the crews that provide the services; the maritime, shipping and marine transport industries encompasses a vast array of activity.

As a specialist maritime legal firm, Shearwater Law covers each of the maritime industry’s core sectors, these being:

  • Shipping.
  • Marine insurance.
  • Ports and logistics.
  • Cruise and travel.
  • Yachts and superyachts.
  • Workboat, fishing and small commercial vessels.
  • International trade.

We are able to provide English law advice in respect of these services anywhere in the world and are adroit at navigating the complexities of such cases.

Our clients

Shearwater Law and its lawyers have evolved to support the modern maritime industry and its numerous stakeholders.

Whether you are a vessel owner, charterer, operator, port representative or insurer, Shearwater Law is well placed to provide expert advice across any aspect of the shipping and marine transportation industries.

From individual commercial fishing vessels to representing the legal interests of listed international shipping firms, Shearwater Law is able to serve your interests.

Our locations

The UK has a rich maritime history. A history that is not solely rooted in the City of London.

We have offices in Plymouth and Newcastle, cities with a rich maritime heritage, which allows us to employ a diverse range of talent and tap into a broader range of maritime and legal experience.

That said, we operate in the heart of the marine and insurance community in the City of London, giving us easy access to service providers, courts and arbitral institutions such as Admiralty or Commercial Courts, London Maritime Arbitrators Association (LMAA), and London Court of International Arbitration (LCIA).

Our approach

Embracing digitalisation, taking action on emissions, committing to equality - the modern maritime industry is changing.

We believe that maritime legal practices are changing, too.

At Shearwater Law, we embrace our alternative business structure to ensure we operate in a lean, focused, commercial manner that delivers results for our clients.

Our team is intellectually-invested in, and passionate about maritime, shipping and transport affairs. Furthermore, a number of our team have industry experience - meaning we can speak and advise from lived experience on many of the cases we deal with.

Our practice covers both dry and wet shipping as well as regulatory areas, such as Health & Safety and sanctions.

Discover more about our mission, vision and values below.

Our mission

We offer high-quality and dependable legal advice to the maritime industry.

Through our knowledge and experience we exceed our clients’ expectations by providing exceptional, flexible and user-friendly legal services whilst delivering outstanding value for money.

Our vision

We will be renowned for our expert, excellent and friendly service and be the trusted advisor to the maritime industry.

We will continuously develop and expand our range of legal services across the maritime industry, setting the benchmark for quality and value for money.

Our values

Open - we operate in a world which can often be complex and sometimes stressful. We work closely with our clients, listening to their needs in an approachable and tailored way.

Trusted - our clients need a partner they can rely on. We are diligent and knowledgeable and our clients rely on our straightforward and transparent advice.

Collaborative - we provide an environment that allows our people to work closely together - to develop, learn and grow. This allows our people to become the best they can and to provide the best possible service to our clients.

Effective - we deliver the right solutions, providing a responsive and flexible service which is focused on the client’s best interests.

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