Admiralty and Maritime Law: Becoming an expert

Admiralty and maritime law is one of the oldest divisions practice areas and deals with events and transactions that occur on navigable waters.

Over centuries, this practice area continues to be a rewarding specialization. But gaining expertise in admiralty and maritime law often requires additional study. Though this practice area commonly entails traditional legal doctrines such as contract, tort and business law, there is often an international element, which is not taught in law school.

“Maritime law is a highly specialized, niche legal practice that requires a wealth of knowledge that is difficult to acquire in a traditional JD program,” said Carmen Perez-Llorca, Director and Lecturer in Law at the University of Miami School of Law. “An LL.M. in Maritime Law is a credential that employers in the admiralty field value because it provides the student with knowledge and skills that otherwise have to be acquired on the job.”

Lawyers that specialize in maritime and admiralty law find gainful employment with admiralty firms, cruise companies, insurance companies and government agencies. Many of these jobs are located in major port cities, both in the U.S. and abroad, creating countless business opportunities, Perez-Llorca said. 

“In many cases, lawyers are naturally drawn to the practice of maritime law as a way to connect their passion with their profession,” Perez-Llorca said. “It is a vocational practice for many attorneys. But even when that is not the case, admiralty is a highly rewarding practice with many diverse work opportunities.”


Explore other specialized practice areas where you can become an expert.