Practice Areas

Michael Wales understands the critical issues in ownership and operation of vessels and maritime businesses. Our solutions are tailored to your needs and to the demands of the industry.

If you own a yacht, vessel, maritime company, or a small business, and require guidance on legal issues, please call The Wales Law Firm, P.C. at 619-493-1700. We represent a wide variety of clients from coast to coast handling general business, admiralty and maritime law matters including, but not limited to the following:

LLC and Corporate Entity Formation, Contracts, Leases, Partnership Agreements, Insurance, Business Purchase and Sale Agreements
Including employment issues, business disputes, and more.

Maritime accidents and personal injury - Jones Act
Including workers' compensation for injured maritime workers, fishing injuries, machinery and vessel equipment injuries and more.
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Yacht acquisition
Liability analysis, choice of entity, business formation, ownership succession, charter operations and sales, use and property taxation.

New yacht construction agreements
Including U.S. and international marine construction contracts, financing and escrow concerns, employment agreements.

Manufacturing, warranty, engine design and dealer issues
Warranty defect issues, structural integrity, yacht design issues and more.

Yacht financing, escrow and marine lender and borrower matters
Security issues, buyers' representation, escrow management, lenders' counsel services provided for worldwide banks and more.

Disputes involving recreational, commercial and marine vessels
Products liability claims, consumer fraud cases, marine environmental issues, salvage claims, employment contract disputes and more.

Regulations permitting docks and seawalls
Representing clients in permit and enforcement matters arising from state and federal regulations and law.

State, federal and international tax matters regarding yacht purchases
Second home interest deductions, suitability analysis, capital gains tax concerns, federal income tax analysis, sales and use tax considerations, international value-added tax and more.

Arbitration, litigation and appeals
State and federal mediation, arbitration, litigation and appeals services related to tax disputes, boat collisions, insurance disputes, personal injury claims, warranty claims, and more.

Maritime liens
A lien that arises by operation of law automatically and gives the lienholder a property right in maritime property (for example, vessels) and the right to foreclose the lien in admiralty.

Fishing industry representation
Representing fishing industry owners and operators for accident claims, regulatory compliance and other issues related to their industry.

Representation for yacht brokers
Assistance with the terms and conditions of buy-sell claims, representation in consumer fraud cases, regulatory concerns and more.

Yacht and mega yacht management
Yacht ownership representation in negotiations, tax planning, regulatory documentation, customs issues, safety concerns, terminal contracts and more.

Boating injuries
Injuries or deaths occurring on cruise ships, accidents involving recreational watercraft, boating injuries, pleasure boat collisions.

Cargo and/or freight loss claims
Also known as cargo claims, shipping claims, or transportation claims, are legal demands by a shipper, consignee, or product owner to a carrier for financial reimbursement for a loss or damage to a shipment.

Hull insurance disputes
Analysis of the policy holder’s basic policy form and the several additional provisions including the sue and labor clause, the running down clause, the inchmaree clause, the free of capture and seizure clause, and the war risk clause.

Piers, docks, & maritime construction issues
Insurance policies, zoning matters, premises liability claims, construction contacts, damage claims and more.

Vessel donations
Including creating the charitable organization, structuring the documentation, advising charities on the federal tax and state law issues associated with vessel donation programs and representing donors and purchasers of vessels from such charities.