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Contact Jess

2801 Alaskan Way, Suite 300
Seattle, WA 98121
T: 206.777.7560

Jess G. Webster

Jess enjoys a broad and varied transactional and litigation practice, but marine affairs have long been his focus. Jess’s marine affairs practice encompasses traditional admiralty and maritime representation, but also includes marine resource regulation, fisheries regulation, fishing rights transactions, defense of civil and criminal fisheries enforcement actions, marine environmental representation, shoreline management, large yacht and commercial vessel acquisition, sale, construction, repair and management, maritime employment, and marine insurance coverage litigation.

Representative Experience

  • Representation of vessel owner with respect to grounding, break-up and loss of 285' seafood processing ship on remote island in Alaska, including OPA 90 oil spill response, salvage efforts, defense of vessel owner in action by State and native corporation for wreck removal and damages, and prosecution of insurance coverage claims against delinquent London underwriters for loss and wreck removal.
  • Team defense of manager of refit of superyacht/oceanographic research vessel against claims exceeding $11 million for mismanagement, resulting in defense judgment in favor of manager, and recovery of management fees due and all costs, expense and attorney fees incurred in litigation.
  • Representation of yacht owner in arbitration of claims for multiple defects in construction of yacht, resulting in arbitration award against successive owners of yacht manufacturer and individual owner for full amounts claimed, plus all costs, expenses and attorneys fees incurred in litigation.
  • Representation of lending institution in prosecuting claims against insurance underwriters for bad faith denial of insurance benefits arising from insured’s expedited settlement of sex discrimination claims.
  • Representation of vessel owner in litigation with shipyard arising from conversion of vessel from oil industry support vessel to factory trawler, resulting in judgment for owner for costs of repairs, costs and attorney’s fees.
  • Representation of vessel owners, charterers, carriers, NVOCCs, and maritime lien claimants in admiralty litigation in federal courts throughout the United States, including Alaska, Washington, Oregon, California, Michigan and Hawaii, in respect of claims for breach of charter, maritime employment, possessory and petitory actions, Rule B attachments, and actions to enforce maritime liens.
  • Represented vessel owner in all aspects of sinking of saturation dive support vessel in shipyard in Singapore, including immediate sinking response activities, presentation and resolution of insurance claims for hull loss and liabilities arising from sinking, pursuit of claims against shipyard for sinking of vessel, and successful resolution of all claims through mediation in London, England. Representation involved close coordination with affiliate counsel in Singapore and London.
  • Prosecution of claims for breach of warranty on purchase of deep water construction vessel before Society of Maritime Arbitrators, Inc., NY, NY.
  • Representation of foreign investor in acquiring control of US transportation company in compliance with Jones Act U.S. citizenship requirements.
  • Represented vessel owners in negotiation and drafting of agreements for new construction and repair of vessels. Representation of vessel owners and shipyards in multiple vessel construction and repair disputes in multiple jurisdictions, including Washington, Oregon, Alaska, and jurisdictions bordering the Gulf of Mexico.
  • Representation of sellers and purchasers in negotiation and drafting of multiple purchase and sale transactions for commercial vessels, from boats to ships. Representation of owners and charters in negotiation and drafting of time, voyage and dismise charters and master services agreements for vessel employed in oil industry. Negotiation and drafting of vessel management, manning and services agreements.