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Chip Birthisel
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Last updated: 2/19/2015
Mr. Chip Birthisel
Law Firm Member Individuals
Professional Information
Hamilton, Miller & Birthisel, LLP
Partner
100 South Ashley Drive, Suite 1210
Tampa
Florida
33602  United States
 [ Map ]
813 223-1900 (Phone)
813 223-1933 (Fax)
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Legal
  40
  Florida, New York, Virginia, Virgin Islands
  MBE
Personal Information
  Chip Birthisel is a founding partner in our Tampa office. He practices transportation and maritime law, personal injury and wrongful death defense, marine pollution, general liability defense, and insurance law. His practice includes international and domestic litigation and transactions. He is a former federal government contracting officer and a retired Coast Guard officer, who spent his final years on active duty as a law specialist and trial attorney assigned to the U.S. Department of Justice, Aviation and Admiralty Litigation Section.

Chip represents a wide range of transportation, maritime, and general litigation clients, providing a myriad of services including litigation of maritime and landbased wrongful death and personal injury, maritime lien, bunker, P & I, cargo, and hull and machinery claims. He represents many of the world’s largest insurers and has provided coverage opinions and defense, and litigated declaratory judgment actions on behalf of numerous insurers. He also handles contractual matters (charters, bills
of lading, sales, brokerage and finance agreements, concession agreements, franchise and license agreements, vehicle lease and purchase agreements, owner/operator agreements), from drafting to litigation.

His practice includes rendering advice on all marine regulatory matters, including
coverage placement, flagging of vessels, classification society compliance, and U.S.,
flag state, and international (i.e. SOLAS, IMO, and Law of the Sea Conventions)
regulatory compliance. In addition, he has provided counsel regarding the
establishment of a variety of maritime businesses including cruiseline operations,
cargo lines, Ocean Transportation Intermediary licensing and compliance (VOCC, NVOCC, and Freight Forwarders), and marine and land based terminal operations. He renders advice daily on compliance with U.S. Customs and Border Patrol, Coast Guard, Immigration, Federal Maritime Commission, National Highway
Transportation Safety Administration, Environmental Protection Agency, and other international and domestic regulatory schemes.

Chip has represented and represents a variety of foreign entities and clients in
international business transactions and litigation including clients in Japan, New
Zealand, Australia, Mexico, Dominican Republic, Colombia, Panama, the Marshall
Islands, England, Norway, Venezuela, Ireland, Korea, Costa Rica, Brazil, Honduras,
the Philippines, most every island nation in the Caribbean, and Canada.

PRACTICE AREAS
Maritime and Transportation Law
Personal Injury and Wrongful Death Defense
General Liability Defense
Insurance Law and Coverage
Marine Pollution
Cargo
Commercial Litigation
International Law
Property and Casualty
Class Actions
Complex Business Disputes

RECOGNITION
AV® Rated by Martindale Hubbell for the highest level of professional excellence
Recognized as a Florida Super Lawyer by Law & Politics

EDUCATION
J.D., cum laude, University of Miami School of Law
M.S., Education, The Johns Hopkins University
B.S., University of San Francisco

BAR AND COURT ADMISSIONS
Florida, 1991
Virginia, 2001
U.S. District Court for the Northern, Southern, and Middle Districts of Florida
U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of Virginia
U.S. Courts of Appeals for the Fifth Circuit
U.S. Courts of Appeals for the Eleventh Circuit
U.S. Courts of Appeals for the Armed Forces
United States Court of International Trade
U.S. Supreme Court

MEMBERSHIPS
Maritime Law Association, Proctor Member
Propeller Club of the United States
The Southeastern Admiralty Law Institute
Claims and Litigation Management Alliance (CLM)
American Institute of Marine Underwriters
Tampa Bay Mariners Club
Fort Lauderdale Mariners Club
Southeastern Admiralty Law Institute
Hillsborough County Bar Association

NOTABLE PUBLISHED OPINIONS
City of Riviera Beach v. That Certain Unnamed Gray, Two Story Vessel Approximately Fifty-Seven Feet In Length, 649 F.3d 1259 (11th Cir. 2011)
Dann Marine Towing, L.C. v. McLean Contracting Co., 2010 WL 1486008 (E.D. Va. 2010)
Axis Reinsurance Co. v. Henley, 2009 WL 3416248 (N.D. Fla. 2009)
Axis Reinsurance Co. v. Resmondo, 2009 WL 1537903 (M.D. Fla. 2009)
Lewis v. JPI Corp., 2009 WL 3761984 (S.D. Fla. 2009)
Stromquist v. Ace American Ins. Co., 2011 WL 294421 (Fla. 2d DCA 2011)
Additional Information

NAMWOLF
150 N. Michigan Ave., Ste. 800
Chicago, IL 60601
312.733.7780

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