By:   Charles R. Lipcon

Our Award Winning Maritime Lawyers Handle Accidents, Injuries and Assaults at Sea

Maritime Best Lawyers 2022

Admiralty and maritime law is a highly-specialized area of the law and surprisingly few lawyers actually have a full and thorough understanding of the law. Whether you’ve been accidentally or intentionally injured at sea, you  need experienced and knowledgeable legal representation to receive the compensation that you deserve . With a team of 12 attorneys and over 187 years  of combined experience, Lipcon, Margulies & Winkleman, P.A. sets the international standard for maritime legal representation. Our attorneys have successfully resolved  over 3000 cases for over $300 million in total settlements and awards. LM&W, P.A. has been named “Lawyer of the Year”® in Maritime and to “Best Law Firms”® by U.S. News and World Report. Founded in 1971, we have fought tirelessly for more than 50 years to help our clients injured at sea obtain the maximum recovery under the law.  

Whether you were injured while working on a vessel or while you were a passenger on a cruise ship or pleasure craft;  or were assaulted by a crewmember or other passenger, we are here to help you or your loved one.  We work on a contingency basis, which means that you do not have to pay us a penny unless we make a successful recovery for you.  And our consultation is always free so you can quickly get the free advice from  our award-winning admiralty and maritime legal team. Call today to speak to a veteran maritime attorney immediately.

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What Is A Maritime Lawyer?

Maritime law focuses on activities that occur on navigable waters. Maritime lawyers must be knowledgeable about laws that govern waters falling under the jurisdiction of individual nations as well as international waters. The types of cases that maritime lawyers handle include shipboard accidents on commercial vessels and passenger vessels; boating accidents; cruise ship and shore excursion accidents, such as those involving snorkeling or parasailing, cruise ship rape; and Jones Act claims.  Most of these cases involve injuries due to negligence or criminal behavior. If you’re uncertain whether your case requires a maritime attorney, contact Lipcon, Margulies & Winkleman, P.A. for a free consultation. 

What Does A Maritime Lawyer Do?

Maritime lawyers handle maritime cases.  In short, this means cases that involve navigable bodies of water. Because of the unique nature of maritime law, maritime lawyers require additional training and education to ensure that they are able to handle the nuanced cases that develop from accidents and torts that occur at sea. Maritime lawyers must know how to identify the court of jurisdiction in any claim and to be able to litigate that claim under the rules of that court. The types of cases that maritime lawyers handle include ship accidents, Jones Act claims (which mirror worker accident claims on land), seaman’s claims, maritime wrongful death, assault, and rape. Because many of these claims occur on cruise ships, cargo ships, oil rigs, and other types of vessels, they require attorneys who are familiar with the nuances of maritime law. With over 187 years of maritime experience, Lipcon, Margulies & Winkleman are the preeminent maritime law attorneys operating in the United States. Contact us immediately to discuss your case.

Our Attorney TV Appearances Covering Admiralty & Maritime Cases

The attorneys at Lipcon, Margulies & Winkleman, P.A. are known throughout the legal community and have developed a reputation as industry leaders. News networks like ABC, CBS, NBC, CNN, and FOX News have featured our maritime law authorities on their networks when they need an expert opinion about a legal matter occurring at sea. Our named partners have made appearances on the Today Show, Dr. Oz, Good Morning America, Nightline, and many others.  Established news media outlets seek our legal opinions and expertise because we are able to provide thorough, informed, and concise information in a way that’s digestible to their audiences.  There is a reason why our attorneys have appeared on every single major news network, literally hundreds of times.  It is because we are the go to resource for knowledge, expertise and information regarding anything that happens on the water. 

nightlineoztodaynbc newsJuly 10, 2019 - Good Morning AmericaJuly 10, 2019 - CNN Headline NewsJuly 9, 2019 - The Early ShowJuly 9, 2019 - ABC World News

View More TV Appearances

Meet Our Maritime Lawyers

The maritime and admiralty attorneys at Lipcon, Margulies & Winkleman, P.A. have been dedicated to helping victims of maritime accidents, injuries, assaults, and wrongful death since 1971. Meet our world famous team of 12 full time maritime lawyers:

Charles R. Lipcon

Awards
Lawyer of the Year
Best Lawyers in America
Best Law Firms (US News)
SuperLawyers
Multi-Million Dollar Advocates Club
Million Dollar Advocates Club
Experience
51 Years
Notable Verdict
$25.8 million for an engine room worker on a cargo ship (Houston, Texas Federal Court)
Concentration
Maritime Law

Jason R. Margulies

Awards
Best Lawyers in America
Best Law Firms (US News)
SuperLawyers
Experience
29 Years
Notable Verdict
Handled more El Faro cases than any other lawyer in the world, and resolved them all collectively for approximately $10 million
Concentration
Cruise Ship Rape and Sexual Assault

Michael A. Winkleman

Awards
Best Lawyers in America
Best Law Firms (US News)
SuperLawyers
Top 50 Personal Injury Verdicts in Florida in 2017
Experience
15 Years
Notable Verdict
$4.4 million for a Longshoreman injured at Port Miami (Walker v FPL)
Concentration
Cruise Ship Catastrophic Injury & Cruise Ship Sexual Assault

Jacqueline Garcell

Awards
Top 50 Personal Injury Verdicts in Florida in 2017
SuperLawyers
Experience
8 Years
Notable Verdict
$2.6 million – cruise ship passenger injured in cruise ship's water park area
Concentration
Cruise Ship Sexual Assaults and Shore Excursion Accidents

Carol L. Finklehoffe

Awards
Admiralty & Maritime Law Certified Specialist (CA)
Experience
28 Years
Notable Verdict
$15,500,000 personal injury case
Concentration
Crew & passenger personal injury, wrongful death and sexual assault claims

Geoffrey Probst

Experience
17 years
Notable Verdict
$360,000 - Yacht Accident Crew Member Accident
Concentration
Maritime & Admiralty Personal Injury

Marc Weiner

Awards
William F. Blews Pro Bono Service Award
Experience
8+ Years
Notable Verdict
Anthem of the Seas hurricane sailing incident – Confidential $$
Concentration
Maritime / Admiralty personal injury – crew and passenger claims.

Andrew Freedman

Experience
10 Years
Notable Verdict
$ Confidential for an alcohol over service case resulting in catastrophic injuries
Concentration
Maritime & admiralty personal injury; and motor vehicle accident personal injury

Daniel Grammes

Awards
CALI Book Award for: Civil Procedure; Appellate Advocacy; Professional Responsibility; Payment Systems; and Conflicts of Law
Experience
5+ Years
Notable Verdict
Confidential $ for a Hurricane Sailing Incident
$875,000 Crewmember class action wage claim
Concentration
Maritime & Admiralty Personal Injury

Stefanie Black

Awards
Book Awards for Florida Civil Procedure; Negotiations, and Law School Clinic
Experience
8 Years
Notable Verdict
18 trial wins for The State of Florida
Concentration
Maritime & Admiralty Personal Injury

L. Alex Perez

Awards
CALI Award for Maritime Personal Injury & Death
Vessel Documentation & Finance
Experience
5+ years
Concentration
Passenger & Crew Claims
Recreational Boating Claims
Marine Property Damage Claims
Marine Insurance
Maritime Contract Claims
Maritime Procedure

Gabriela Di Mauro

Awards
CALI Book Award for Bar Preparation Skills
Experience
3 Years
Concentration
Maritime & Admiralty Personal Injury

Brett Silvers

Awards
Pro Bono Commendation
Experience
1+ Years
Notable Verdict
N/A
Concentration
Maritime & Admiralty Personal Injury

Work With the Team That Sets Precedents in Maritime Law

Our firm of Miami maritime lawyers is constantly pushing boundaries by representing — and winning — landmark cases that set precedent for all cases going forward. This cutting-edge understanding of maritime law is one only one of the reasons why hiring Lipcon, Margulies & Winkleman, P.A. for your Miami maritime law case is an easy decision to make.

Our impressive list of landmark cases includes the following:

  1. Appellate Opinion in K.T. vs Royal Caribbean Cruises, LTD

    This is a landmark decision that will require every cruise line to warn passengers about the risk of rapes and sexual assaults on their vessels. LMAW obtains landmark Appellate Court decision in a case where a teenage girl was raped while aboard Royal Caribbean Cruise ship

    Read More +
  2. First Class Action in Admiralty Allowed

    HERNANDEZ v. The MOTOR VESSEL SKYWARD 61 F.R.D. 558 (S.D. Fla. 1973)


    PROCEDURAL POSTURE: In an action for breach of contract, negligence, and breach of implied warranty of fitness arising out of a pleasure cruise during which the passengers and the crew were exposed to contaminated food

    Read More +
  3. Error in Medical Negligence Case to not Allow Interrogatories Regarding Textbooks Regarded as Authoritative by Defendant Physician

    BUGA v. WIENER, M.D. 277 So. 2d 296; (Fla. App. 4th 1973)


    PROCEDURAL POSTURE: The plaintiffs, patient, and her husband sought review of a decision from the Circuit Court, Broward County (Florida), which, based upon a jury verdict, entered judgment in favor of defendant physician on plaintiffs’ medical malpractice complaint

    Read More +

View More Landmark Cases

Maritime Lawyers

Types of Maritime Cases We Handle

From our headquarters in Miami, Florida, we represent victims of all types of offshore accidents and injuries around the world. Generally, our clients fall into one of the categories below.

Note that not all cases are black and white. Whether or not you fit into any of the categories below, if you have been the victim of an injury, accident or assault that took place at sea or offshore in any capacity, email or call us now at (877) 233-1238 for free advice on your best course of action.

Locations Served

We take tremendous pride in having a truly global scope for our practice.  We have successfully handled significant cases around the world.  From Italy to Indian and nearly everywhere in between, there is simply no geographic limit to the cases we will handle.  

Our law practice has the ability to handle matters for clients worldwide. Because of the nature of maritime law, our clients come from all over the world. When you retain our services, you can rest assured that you will receive the best representation available.  With attorneys, agents and correspondents stationed around the country and around the world, we are ready willing and able to assist you in your time of need, wherever the case needs to be filed. venue. 

Our attorneys have an extensive plus 50 year history of representing injured maritime workers and passengers from the United States and worldwide. With our global headquarters located in downtown Miami near the Port of Miami and all of our attorneys members of the Florida Bar, we are in the ideal location to handle any and all maritime actions.

LM&W, P.A maintains satellite offices in Colorado and Washington to allow us to best represent clients throughout the United States.   Our Washington office is strategically located so that we can best serve our West Coast clients injured on cruises that require cases to be filed in Washington State such as Holland America Cruises.  We also have on our team, attorneys licensed in California in order to handle claims that must be filed in California such as Princess Cruises.  We have also successfully represented clients from these physical locations and pride ourselves on having successfully represented clients from literally every corner of the globe:

United States

  • Anchorage, Alaska
  • Baton Rouge, Louisiana
  • Bayonne, New Jersey
  • Beaumont, Texas
  • Boston, Massachusetts
  • Charleston, South Carolina
  • Corpus Christi, Texas
  • Fort Lauderdale, Florida
  • Galveston, Texas
  • Hampton Roads, Virginia
  • Honolulu, Hawaii
  • Houston, Texas
  • Jacksonville, Florida
  • Key West, Florida
  • Long Beach, California
  • Los Angeles, California
  • Miami, Florida
  • New Orleans, Louisiana
  • New York, New York
  • Norfolk, Virginia
  • Oakland, California
  • San Diego, California
  • San Francisco, California
  • Savannah, Georgia
  • Seattle, Washington
  • Tampa, Florida
  • Tacoma, Washington
  • West Palm Beach, Florida

South America

  • Arequipa, Peru
  • Bogota, Colombia
  • Buenos Aires, Argentina
  • Guayaquil, Ecuador
  • Guyana
  • Iquique, Chile
  • Lima, Peru
  • Quito, Ecuador
  • Trujillo, Peru
  • Valparaiso, Chile
  • Venezuela

Central America

  • Bluefields, Nicaragua
  • Leon, Nicaragua
  • Managua, Nicaragua
  • Mexico
  • Puerto Limon, Costa Rica
  • Roatan Islas de la Bahia, Honduras
  • San Jose, Costa Rica
  • San Pedro Sula, Honduras
  • San Salvador, El Salvador
  • Tegucigalpa, Honduras

Caribbean & Canada

  • Canada
  • Dominican Republic
  • Grenada
  • Jamaica
  • Trinidad

Asia

  • India
  • Jakarta
  • Indonesia
  • Malaysia
  • Thailand
  • China

Europe

  • United Kingdom
  • Italy
  • France
  • Romania
  • Bulgaria
  • Macedonia
  • Serbia
  • Turkey
  • Bosnia
  • Poland
  • Ukraine
  • Monaco

Australia

  • New Zealand

Africa

  • South Africa

No matter where you are located in the world, if you were injured at sea or at an international hotel or resort, do not hesitate to contact our law firm for a free confidential consultation. We will let you know if we can help and guide you through the entire process until you receive the maximum compensation available under the applicable law.  Let us put our 50 years of experience to work for you!

What to Do After an Offshore Accident

There are a number of steps that injured offshore workers should take following an accident. Although many workers may be shaken and scared at the time of the injury, it is important for them to be aware of these steps and follow them to the best of their ability.

Seek Medical Attention

On land, if you suffer an injury, help is available much more readily. On a vessel, victims are more isolated. Telephone and other communication services may not be working, which means emergency crews may not be reached until hours later. Even if they are reached quickly, a vessel may be out at sea in the middle of nowhere, and it can take several hours for an emergency team to reach the victim. Furthermore, not every vessel is equipped with onboard medical facilities. On land, victims who are injured can be transported to a number of hospitals or clinics, but that’s not the case at sea.

Regardless of when or where you receive an injury, it is crucial to seek medical attention immediately following the incident. Your health and wellbeing are of utmost importance, but some people choose to self-medicate or simply disregard their injuries altogether. Our attorneys advise against this and urge accident victims to promptly seek attention from their own doctor or a local hospital emergency room as soon as possible.

Inform Your Employer About the Injury

Injured offshore workers should always advise their employers of their injuries as soon as possible. That means at the very least, the harmed individual should advise his or her immediate supervisor or superior directly. Depending on the nature of the injuries, fellow co-workers may take it upon themselves to inform the employer of the accident; however, accident victims should not rely on those workers to handle that for them. In fact, accident victims are encouraged to write down what happened and provide the employer with a copy of that report as soon as they are physically able to do so.

Compile Necessary Information

Unfortunately, some employers will do their best to avoid properly compensating an accident victim for his or her injuries. That is why it is crucial for injured offshore workers to maintain complete documentary evidence of everything that took place after the occurrence of the accident. The documents should include contact information for all witnesses to the incident, as well as photos of the accident area and all equipment that may have caused the injury.

Keep Quiet and Never Sign Anything

While it is true that offshore workers should report their injuries to their employers, they should never speak to others about the specifics of the incident. Simple comments made to a friend at work or other co-workers may be used against you at a later date, should it become necessary to sue your employer. Likewise, victims should never sign any documents presented to them by their employers or accept any settlement offers without first consulting with a lawyer or admit any level of fault.

Seek Legal Guidance

The laws protecting offshore workers are very specific and can be quite complex. Accordingly, injured workers should seek legal advice from lawyers who are knowledgeable in maritime and offshore injury law. Working with such attorneys will provide victims with the best opportunity of obtaining just compensation for their injuries.

Employers have specific rules and obligations under the law, and when they fail to follow those rules, they can be held legally responsible.

Recovery Under Maritime Law

Over the years, maritime law was developed through common law and various court decisions. Today, the laws offer certain maritime workers benefits and protections. Some of the more significant developments in the law include shipowners’ obligations to provide seaworthy vessels, as well as maintenance and cure.

Vessel seaworthiness refers to the duty that owners have to properly maintain and equip their vessels. If an offshore worker or another type of seaman is hurt or becomes sick due to a vessel being deemed unseaworthy, the owner of that vessel can be held legally responsible for the worker’s damages. If you believe you have sustained injury or illness due to a vessel’s unseaworthiness, let a Lipcon, Margulies & Winkleman, P.A. lawyer help you protect your rights.

The Jones Act

Maritime workers undertake many dangerous jobs that have a very high risk of injury. Under the Jones Act, seamen who are hurt or become ill as a result of their job duties are entitled to sue their employers if it can be demonstrated that the vessel owner or another crew member negligently caused their injury or death. Injured individuals and/or their loved ones may be entitled to file claims under the Jones Act, and working with a knowledgeable attorney can help such victims obtain the just compensation they deserve.

Death on the High Seas

The Death on the High Seas Act (DOHSA) was enacted in 1920 in an effort to protect the legal position of families of seamen who die on international waters due to unseaworthiness or negligence. Under the Act, a seaman’s children, spouse, and other dependents are able to pursue damages to cover burial costs, medical bills, and lost support, among other things. Such individuals are referred to as dependant survivors. The claims for wrongful death must be brought by the personal representative of the estate. This person can be selected in a will or can be appointed by the court in accordance with state law.

The Longshore and Harbor Workers’ Compensation Act (LHWCA)

The Longshore and Harbor Workers’ Compensation Act provides workers with certain protections related to work-related injuries and occupational diseases. More specifically, the law provides medical care and compensation to those who are disabled by injuries that happened while on U.S. navigable waters or adjoining areas that are used to unload, load, repair and build certain types of vessels.

Some of the workers covered by the Act include longshoremen, harbor workers, shipbuilders, shipbreakers and ship repairers. Seamen who are covered under the Jones Act are not covered under LHWCA. State workers compensation may also be an alternative. This is a very tricky area of the law known as the twilight zone.

Maritime Lawyer FAQs

The maritime and admiralty law attorneys at Lipcon, Margulies & Winkleman, P.A. have negotiated and litigated thousands of cases throughout our over 50 year history. These are some of the most frequently asked questions that we’ve received from clients in our decades of experience.

What should I do after an accident at sea?

How much does a maritime lawyer cost?

Where does my lawsuit have to be filed?

When should I contact a maritime lawyer for a cruise ship injury

Can I contact a maritime lawyer from overseas after an offshore accident?

What kind of compensation can an injured cruise ship passenger receive?

Questions to Ask Your Maritime Attorney

Anyone can have a website or advertise. Before hiring a maritime attorney, ask the following questions.

  1. Have you ever represented a shipping company as their maritime lawyer?
  2. Have you or any family members ever worked for a shipping company as an employee?
  3. As a maritime lawyer, how many cases have you handled while representing an injured seaman?
  4. As a cruise ship lawyer, how many cases have you handled while representing an injured passenger?
  5. As a maritime lawyer, have you tried a seaman’s or passenger’s case to a verdict?
  6. What is the amount of the highest verdict your client has received in a trial?
  7. Have you handled any landmark cases in the admiralty and maritime field?
  8. As a cruise ship lawyer, how many of your cases have gone on appeal?
  9. How many years of maritime lawyer experience do you have in the admiralty and maritime area representing injured seaman and passengers?
  10. Have you ever represented a seaman’s union?
  11. Have you written any books or articles dealing with admiralty or maritime claims?
  12. Have you ever lectured on admiralty or maritime law?
  13. What is your maritime lawyer rating with Martindale Hubbel?

Additionally, you can find out a lot about a maritime lawyer by searching the web using his or her name. Check newspaper stories online. You can also go to Lexis Nexis and see copies of all opinions in which an attorney is mentioned and read directly about the results of cases that the cruise accident lawyer has handled. West Law has the same type of database.

Contact The Leaders in Maritime Law to Discuss Your Case

If you or a loved one have been involved in an accident, sustained an injury, or were assaulted while at sea or in port, or you are grieving the wrongful death of a loved one that occurred aboard a cruise ship or while at sea — reach out to us. We can help.

We are headquartered in Miami, Florida, a major hub for vessels and cruise ships from all over the world. In addition to handling proceedings in Florida, our attorneys regularly litigate across the United States and represent clients all over the world.

Not only does Lipcon, Margulies & Winkleman, P.A. focus specifically on admiralty and maritime law, we are nationally recognized by the highest maritime law organizations and media outlets for our contributions to maritime law and prolific history of successful outcomes in the courtroom, board room, and negotiation table.

Contact us now at 877-233-1238 and let us advise you on how to best proceed with your maritime claim.