Maritime: Energy, LNG/LPG and Cables

  • Holland & Knight's Energy, LNG/LPG and Cables Team assists clients with every facet of their operations, including project finance, energy law, maritime law, environmental law, regulatory law and litigation.
  • With worldwide offices and a network of foreign correspondent counsel, we provide clients with seamless global representation.
  • When an unforeseen incident occurs, our Rapid Response Team will immediately mobilize to help you respond and protect your interests.
  • For timely updates on transportation issues, bookmark the Holland & Knight Transportation Blog.

Holland & Knight's Energy, LNG/LPG and Cables Team includes lawyers and professionals throughout the firm who are highly skilled in every legal discipline associated with the development, sale and transportation of LNG/LPG and the construction and operation of submarine cables, including project finance, energy law, maritime law, environmental law, regulatory law and litigation.

We represent a broad spectrum of clients, including natural gas pipeline companies, offshore deepwater port terminal developers and lenders, power companies, utility companies and offshore wind projects, in all aspects of their operations.

Your Legal Team for Seamless Global Support

We recognize that every project and transaction is unique and will assemble a client team tailored to meet your specific needs. With offices around the world as well as a network of foreign correspondent counsel and more than 550 alumni from our foreign lawyer trainee program (LINK), we can provide you with seamless worldwide representation in every aspect of your operations, including:

  • project finance, including equity investment, vendor finance and foreign government involvement
  • facility and infrastructure development
  • EPC contracting and specialty equipment procurement
  • long-term supply contracts and LNG Sale and Purchase Agreements (SPAs)
  • spot cargo agreements, including both FOB and CIF terms
  • marketing, trading and risk management techniques, including instruments such as contracts for delivery, swaps and derivatives
  • homeland and maritime security requirements under international maritime law and concomitant provisions of the United States Maritime Transportation Security Act of 2002

Comprehensive Legal Counsel for LNG/LPG Clients

Clients engaged in the development, sale and transportation of liquefied natural gas (LNG) and liquefied petroleum gas (LPG) face myriad opportunities and challenges. Our team helps clients to develop legal strategies and solutions that maximize their opportunities while minimizing their risks. We assist clients with every facet of their operations, including financing, contracts, regulatory issues, disputes and more. Following is a summary of our LNG/LPG experience:

Financing

  • financing new building construction of LNG carriers and specialty tugboats, including structured finance and synthetic leasing transactions
  • transfer of equity interest in liquefaction facility
  • re-financing/synthetic lease of an LNG carrier
  • financing and chartering of specialty tugboats with specially built fire-fighting equipment
  • representation of equity participants in original Title XI leveraged lease financing for five LNG carriers and continued representation of equity interests throughout life of the bareboat charters
  • representation of lenders in connection with the worldwide workouts of the Tidal marine, Colocotronis and Karavias fleets, including mortgage enforcement proceedings in the United States and 20 overseas jurisdictions

Contracts

  • bareboat and time charter party agreements and contracts of affreightment
  • ship management agreements
  • negotiating ship construction contracts and security for the yard's obligations
  • contract negotiation concerning an on-site (manufacturer’s facility) LNG satellite tank operation
  • extensive contract advice and litigation assistance in relation to the construction of LNG vessels
  • contracts for the construction of LNG tankers and the use of these specialized ships after they are launched
  • contracts with pilots, longshoreman, specialty tugs and fireboats

Regulatory

  • regulatory approvals and court approval for an LNG import terminal
  • appeals of U.S. Coast Guard Letters of Recommendation regarding LNG vessel transits
  • pursuit of formal interpretations from the U.S. Department of Transportation, Pipeline and Hazardous Materials Safety Administration regarding LNG Siting Requirements
  • all aspects of regulatory compliance, including ship security, cargo manifesting, vessel crew requirements and U.S. Certificates of Financial Responsibility (COFRs)
  • international maritime convention compliance (IMO SOLAS, STCW, ISM, ISPS Code and other standards)
  • discharge port requirements, including personal relationships with many U.S. Coast Guard Captains of the Port (COTPs)
  • U.S. Department of Energy import licensing
  • Jones Act requirements and impact on operations
  • U.S. maritime regulatory ruling letters
  • lead regulatory counsel for a company that has proposed to construct a new pipeline to import regasified natural gas from an offshore LNG terminal to a location along the East Coast of the United States
  • appeal of a DOT enforcement action for alleged regulatory compliance deficiencies associated with terminal operations and maintenance procedures, training and record-keeping

Disputes/Litigation

  • litigation concerning LNG/C The Matthew brought by the city of Boston to block entry to the port after 9/11 and follow-up negotiations concerning security and fire protection
  • appeal of a U.S. Coast Guard Captains of the Port (COPTs) order issued against the LNG/C The Matthew after 9/11
  • contract dispute with LNG/C owner and operator over charter party agreement and out-of-service days
  • contract dispute with the manufacturer of LNG submerged combustion vaporizers
  • construction dispute with the design engineer of an LNG terminal expansion project
  • representation of LNG carrier damaged in maritime collision with a submarine

Additional Areas of Experience

  • Society of International Gas Tanker & Terminal Operators (SIGTTO) guidelines
  • maritime insurance advice, including potential “war-risk” riders
  • representation of off-shore deepwater port terminal developer
  • representation of an interstate natural gas pipeline company in connection with permitting and construction of a new pipeline serving an LNG facility

Full Scope of Services for Managing Your Undersea Cable Project

Clients in the undersea cable field require a wide range of regulatory, transactional and litigation services. Our team of communications, maritime, environmental, real estate, land use and energy attorneys represents clients engaged in telecommunications, electrical power, scientific and military cable system projects. We regularly assist in all aspects of operations, including:

  • cable regulatory
  • cable construction and maintenance
  • cable fault litigation
  • cable and infrastructure security

Our knowledge and experience in cable matters spans the entire industry, including marine surveys, U.S. and overseas cable landing licenses, state and U.S. Army Corps of Engineers permits, construction and maintenance agreements, indefeasible right-of-use and collocation contracts, vessel and ROV/AUV charters and fault litigation.

Following is a summary of our related experience:

Litigation

  • representation of owner and operator of submerged electrical cable arising from an anchor drag in Long Island Sound
  • defense of multinational construction company concerning litigation related to claim of damage to a submerged electrical cable during marine dredging work in San Juan, Puerto Rico
  • Y-49 Cable Anchor Drag Damage Claim: litigation of $25 million property damage claim arising from anchor drag against submerged utility electrical cable during marine construction of natural gas pipeline connection from Northport, Long Island, to Hunts Point, New York
  • multiple claimants, cross-claims and counterclaims in context of shipowner's limitation proceeding
  • 1385 LIPA/CL&P Cable Damage Claim: litigation of multimillion-dollar property damage claim on behalf of utility to recover repair costs and consequential damages for anchor drag incident that severed four of seven underwater cables between Northport, Long Island, and Norwalk, Connecticut; Claims filed in multiparty shipowner's limitation proceeding
  • Central Hudson - PK Line Allision: litigation and trial of damages claim for severed undersea natural gas pipeline crossing the Hudson River, including recovery of emergency response, repair and overhead charges incurred by utility
  • review of cable fault incidents, repairs and restoration to determine causes and potential liability, and handle related litigation
  • litigation in New York representing the owners of power cables damaged by a survey vessel

Regulatory

  • monitoring federal, state and international legislation and administration policy in the telecommunication, security and maritime areas

Contracts

  • reviewing seller-drafted asset purchase agreements
  • advised a public utility on restructuring undersea power cable maintenance and crossing agreements

Environmental

  • review of environmental obligations associated with existing and planned international, federal and state licenses and permits
  • review of marine ecosystem and other cable protection measures to ensure maximum value and legal compliance

Additional Areas of Experience

  • representing public utility on development of 660 MW undersea DC transmission line into New York City
  • international tax assistance for U.S. and foreign submarine cable owners

Immediate Help When It’s Needed Most

In the event of an unforeseen incident, the firm's Rapid Response Team is equipped to mobilize a multilingual task force of experienced legal and technical specialists, appropriate to the magnitude of any marine incident. From first response to government hearings and litigation, our maritime attorneys work together to protect your interests every step of the way. Team members can also advise you on establishing crisis management teams to deal with environmental responses and high volume claims handling.

We investigate and advise on all aspects of:

  • vessel loss or damage
  • cargo loss or damage
  • personal injury and death claims
  • natural resources and other environmental damage