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Maritime Insurance Lawyer Forrest Booth Discusses the Significant SCOTUS Ruling Regarding Punitive Damages in Merchant Seamen's Lawsuits

July 3, 2019

Hinshaw's San Francisco-based partner Forrest Booth—who focuses his practice on insurance and reinsurance matters, particularly as they relate to admiralty and maritime law—was quoted in a Law360 story titled "High Court's Seaman Injury Decision A Boon For Shipowners." The article discusses the recent decision handed down by the U.S. Supreme Court in a suit filed under the Jones Act and the general maritime law, wherein a seaman sought to recover punitive damages. The high court ultimately found that "an injured merchant seaman can't seek punitive damages based on the common-law maritime claim of unseaworthiness."

According to Booth, the decision is a major win for shipowners and their insurers, since claims for punitive damages for unseaworthiness are often used as a negotiating tactic by plaintiffs' lawyers in maritime injury litigation.

Read the full article on the Law360 website (subscription may be required)

"High Court's Seaman Injury Decision A Boon For Shipowners," was published by Law360 June 25, 2019.

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