Author: John K. Fulweiler

The Boating Barrister

Salvaging A Corpse: Happy Halloween

By John K. Fulweiler

It’s close on Halloween and I love salvage, making the case of the salvaged corpse a good topic. It was a couple of years after the Second World War in Bayshore, New York. A man named Charles was on the Bay aboard his eighteen-foot flat-bottom skiff. He had a couple of thousand dollars in his pocket, but he was all outta luck (that last line should be read in the voice of Lennie Briscoe (a/k/a Jerry Orbach)….

The Boating Barrister

A Primer: How to handle things, some salty and some not.

By John K. Fulweiler

By John K. Fulweiler, Esq. This is a primer, an antidote to all things amateur. It’s a one-page missive on a mission to commission solutions to a dozen situations (or ‘sitches as a person I love and know calls them). Some of the situations are maritime oriented and some aren’t. A few are unpleasant, but that doesn’t mean a life well led shouldn’t (or won’t) cross these waters. Dragging anchor. Don’t worry you didn’t have enough scope…

The Boating Barrister

Angle of Vanishing: Advocating for Injured Sailors

By John K. Fulweiler

In a lawsuit’s lifecycle, it breaks ground all Iron Maiden-like with musket fire and skirmishes. But keep moving forward gaining each half league, and defense arguments founder and talk of settlement ensues. And I call that point in a lawsuit where the defending troopers drop their arms, the “angle of vanishing.” I’ll get to how Naval Architecture refers to and uses the phrase “angle of vanishing,” but let’s heave-to momentarily and consider the maritime law’s treatment of…

The Boating Barrister

Dirty Yachting

By John K. Fulweiler

Newport is straight fire these days. Covid or not, the docks have a blistered Med look with miles of polished hulls, scuttling uniformed crew and Rovers idling at the curb. They’re calling the couple of new waterfront hotels “boutique,” a label meaning the business model is all about individual excess – larger rooms and larger rates. But it’s like how Mac Miller raps across a pulsing trip-hop: “She do whatever she like. And that just don’t seem…

The Boating Barrister

Old Quarantine Laws and New Rides

By John K. Fulweiler

By John K. Fulweiler, Esq. My girl is out of the Opti and into a Laser 4.7. She’s a stringbean, so it’ll be something for her when the southerly rolls down the Bay. I keep telling her it’s like she’s stepping up to the Formula 1 circuit, but there’s a wee look of bemusement on her face. Whatever the case, COVID has gutted the race calendar and this summer is for knocking around and learning her new…

The Boating Barrister

Spitting the Hook on Bad Marine Insurance and Other Things

By John K. Fulweiler

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By John K. Fulweiler, Esq. Whether blue water sailor or coastal cruiser, our weird quarantine world isn’t all that different from being shipboard. You keep an eye on the food, watch the water, worry the book you’ve maybe been meaning to write, consider the next menu, and scan the seascape. All you’re missing is lap of water and press of wind. My schedule largely remains the same as I trundle each morning into the office and lock…

The Boating Barrister

Corona, the Vessel and Some Other Thoughts

By John K. Fulweiler

Tick-tac-dough. I’m standing. It’s a courtroom where the photocopier is wheeled against the clerk’s desk and justice is mostly mechanical and pedestrian. We’re seeking the Court’s blessing of a settlement involving a minor. I’m idling aside the teenage client. She’s tall and quiet. A guardian (an attorney appointed to review the settlement we’d obtained) explains our (awesome) efforts to the judge and the dialogue devolves into a discussion of her injuries and lingering limitations. The girl is…

The Boating Barrister

Sailors Are A Special Breed & Other Thoughts

By John K. Fulweiler

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Once, a long ways back, a wealthy client complained to me. It was about his family member. “All he does,” he snarled in indignation. “All he does, is sit on a beach and read.” He was behind his desk, golf-course casual with the bumper’s edge of a six-figure car peeking beneath the blinds behind him. He was rolling a shiny shackle in hands, wanting some convivial concurrence from my side. It didn’t come because I don’t do…

The Boating Barrister

How to Find a Maritime Lawyer

By John K. Fulweiler

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By John K. Fulweiler, Esq. The “Biscayne Bay Boil” is what my daughter renamed the cursed Biscayne Bay chop. We spent four days in late December at the Orange Bowl Regatta in Miami, Florida watching our spawn bronco-bust her Opti through something like 13 races. What a fun event, and hats off to the Coral Reef Yacht Club for their enthusiasm and organization. With luck (and provided, I’m told, the snack bar continues to serve the sine…

The Boating Barrister

Instagram Sailing Is Dangerous: So What

By John K. Fulweiler

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Here’s a lazarette’s worth of things boaters would do well to remember: Sailing isn’t a sport…not in the way most of the 50 states understand sports. Foiling hulls will never catch on en masse with the recreational boater. It’s not the cost of the boat. It’s the upkeep. The buoys are there for a reason. Sail because you love it, not for any other reason. Wearing a brand name is one thing; wearing a store’s brand name…

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