H. Allen Black

Allen Black is a partner in Winston & Strawn’s Washington, D.C. office with strong experience handling the full range of maritime matters, including regulatory issues, cargo and shipping issues, vessel financing and documentation, maritime litigation and arbitration, maritime commercial transactions, marine construction and product liability issues, and general maritime counseling.

Mr. Black has handled a number of maritime litigation matters, including marine casualties, product liability, maritime lien cases, and criminal maritime environmental matters. He has helped establish a number of key precedents in maritime law concerning the scope of maritime attachments, the availability of punitive damages in admiralty, and the jurisdictional reach of admiralty limitation of liability actions. Mr. Black practices before the Federal Maritime Commission, representing clients in complaint proceedings, investigations, and licensing matters. He represents vessel owners, operators, and charterers in maritime arbitration matters. Mr. Black assists clients to avoid litigation by conducting shipboard internal investigations and providing timely, practical advice to shipowners and shippers, and by assisting clients with organizational and contracting matters.

Mr. Black assists shipowners and lenders in structuring vessel financing transactions to ensure compliance with U.S. shipping and vessel documentation laws and assists in connection with maritime-related bankruptcy matters. He counsels clients in navigating U.S. and international requirements pertaining to vessel construction, certification, and operations. In addition, he assists clients in designing and implementing international freight transportation agreements and related transactions.

Mr. Black served as a seagoing officer, and later as an attorney, in the U.S. Coast Guard, retiring at the rank of Commander in 1996. As a Coast Guard attorney, he handled a number of felony-level trials and advised Coast Guard commanders, before being selected to train and ultimately manage the Coast Guard’s legal workforce. In addition, he developed, coordinated, and presented international law seminars to top-level military and civilian officials in a number of emerging democracies in support of Department of Defense initiatives. Following retirement from the Coast Guard, Mr. Black worked as a maritime and litigation attorney in Baltimore before joining Winston & Strawn in 1999.

Mr. Black received a B.S. from the United States Coast Guard Academy in 1979 and a J.D. from the Marshall-Wythe School of Law, College of William and Mary in 1991, where he was named to the Order of the Coif and was a teaching assistant and a member of the William and Mary Law Review.

Good to know

Areas of Practice 1) Energy & Environmental, 2) Environmental Litigation & Enforcement, 3) Litigation, 4) Nuclear Energy and 5) Product Liability
Law School William & Mary Law School, J.D., 1991
Education United States Coast Guard Academy, B.S., 1979
Bar Member / Association District of Columbia Bar Association, Maryland State Bar Association, Virginia State Bar Association
Most recent firm Winston & Strawn LLP
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