Maritime Law Program

port of Miami and Atlantic oceanNavigate Your Legal Career into Maritime Law  

Maritime law is a specialized legal area combining U.S. and international laws which rule over contracts, offenses, and injuries occurring on, in, or near navigable waters. Take advantage of Miami’s natural setting and competitive edge with the global headquarters of Carnival, Norwegian and Royal Caribbean cruise lines, and the only living tropical reef in the U.S. Surrounded by water, Miami offers students a unique opportunity to study Maritime Law with renowned faculty experts, and local talented maritime attorneys. Students are exposed to the complexities of how admiralty law, coastal law, international law, and law of the sea intersect and interface. Some stats:

cruise ship in Miami - PortMiami, known as "Cruise Capital of the World,” is the busiest cruise port in the world in both passenger traffic and cruise lines and FL seaports account for the largest tonnage of cargo than any other state.  

- Miami Law achieved one of the top 10 highest scores in the 21st annual International Maritime Law Arbitration Moot. (July 2020) 

- Florida has more recreational boats registered than all other 50 states combined. 

- Miami Law hosted the Maritime Law Association of the U.S. fall 2018 meeting. 

-Access to the expertise of UM’s Rosenstiel School of Marine and Atmospheric Science, a 65-acre marine research and education park that is a world-leader in oceanic and atmospheric research and teaching. 


Brian SattlerI realized that the impact of what I was doing on the ocean depended heavily on what happens in the courtroom while the smugglers are on trial. If the attorney does not have a strong case, the smugglers are just going back to trafficking, and we do it all over again. I wanted to be a part of the process at the next level; ensuring that the smugglers are held accountable." 
Brian Sattler, J.D./LL.M. in Maritime Law ‘16 
Enforcement Division Chief, U.S. Coast Guard 
Los Angeles, CA 


Experiential Learning Opportunities  

International Moot Court Program - International Maritime Law Arbitration Moot Competition and Judge John R. Brown Admiralty Moot Court Competition 

Courses*

Climate Change** 
Coastal Law  
Coastal Zone Management**  
Conservation, Tourism and Development  
Environmental Law 
International Environmental Law 
International Law
Law of the Sea
Legal Environment and Business Planning in Aquaculture**  
Legal Environment of the Cruise Industry

Marine Ecology and the Law 
Maritime Personal Injury
Marine Insurance
Coastal Law 
Privacy, Terrorism and Drug Smuggling in the Maritime Domain
Protection of LIving Marine Resources
Regulatory Compliance, Corporate Governance, and Sustainability    
Water Resources Law and Policy: China & Vietnam
**Offered at Rosenstiel School of Marine and Atmospheric Science (RSMAS).

Faculty

Bernard OxmanProfessor Bernard H. Oxman, Richard A. Hausler Professor of Law, is one of the world's top experts on the laws of the sea. He is the only American lawyer ever appointed to serve as judge ad hoc before both the International Tribunal for the Law of the Sea in Hamburg, Germany and at the International Court of Justice at The Hague, Netherlands. 

Adjunct Professor Daniel Suman's research focuses on coastal management in Latin America, planning and enforcement in Marine Protected Areas, and public participation in environmental planning.

Michael Karcher practices in the areas of admiralty and maritime law, specializing in recreational yachts, marine environmental law and insurance issues. 

Raúl J. Chacón Jr. is a partner with the Miami office of Manning Gross + Massenburg LLP.  Chacón’s practice focuses primarily on defense of clients in a variety of marine matters, which involve personal injury, products liability, premises liability, and commercial litigation issues. 

Extracurricular Opportunities 

Maritime Law Society 
International Law Society
Military and National Security Law Society


I owe a lot of my success to Miami Law, I wanted a law school with an international curriculum and environment. The diversity of the Miami Law community, with students from Central and South America, Cuba, and other islands, made law school a very broadening experience.” 
Denise Krepp, J.D. ‘98 
Director’s Action Group, Naval History and Heritage Command 
Washington, D.C. 


Joint Degrees 

Danielle GauerJ.D./LL.M. in Maritime Law  
J.D./M.P.S. in Marine Ecosystems and Society 

"The contacts I have made in the maritime law field can be attributed to the guidance and support I have received from UM’s faculty, and of course being situated in Miami."
Danielle Gauer, J.D./LL.M. '16 in Maritime Law
Associate Attorney,  Manning Gross + Massenburg LLP
Miami, FL

International Opportunities 

law students on deck of shipWater Resources Law and Policy Program in China and Vietnam 
Maritime and Coastal Legal and Policy Issues Exchange Course with Pontifica Universidad Javeriana Cali, Colombia 
Murdoch University Australia’s International Maritime Law Arbitration Moot Competition

Journals 

International and Comparative Law Review

Lectures / Schools

Rosensteil School from the waterKeith C. Wold Maritime Law LL.M. Program Teaching Fund -  This fund allows Miami Law to bring in the most renowned experts in the fields of international law and law of the sea to lecture. In February 2020, International and humanitarian law expert Claudio M. Grossman presented the lecture, “The Obligation to Negotiate Access to the Pacific Ocean: The Decision of the International Court of Justice in the case between Bolivia and Chile."

Rosensteil School of Marine and Atmospheric Science (RSMAS) - The renowned expertise of RSMAS graduate school provides added opportunities to law students wishing to do a joint degree or take courses through the School. As one of the leading academic oceanographic and atmospheric research institutions in the world, the School's basic and applied research interests encompass virtually all marine-related sciences. 

Sampling of Past Internships / Externships 

Carnival Cruise Line  
Oceana  
Royal Caribbean International Cruise Line 
Svitzer 
U.S. Coast Guard 7th District Legal Office 
U.S. Customs and Border Patrol 
U.S. Department of Justice, Environmental Crimes Section (Washington, DC) 
U.S. Department of Justice, Environmental Enforcement Section (Washington, DC) 
U.S. Department of Justice, Environment and Natural Resource Division (Washington, DC) 
U.S. Department of Transportation Maritime Administration-MARAD (Washington, DC) 
U.S. Environmental Protection Agency-EPA (Washington, DC) 
U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service (Washington, DC) 

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*Lists courses currently or recently offered in this area, but this list is not exhaustive nor does it set out a path of study.