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The course will examine both the scope of American admiralty jurisdiction and substantive maritime law through historical texts, modern case law, and law review articles. Beginning with a look at the English High Court of Admiralty – a civil law tribunal – the course will explore the origins of unique doctrines of maritime law, such as general average and salvage, as well as the influence of the civil law on the development on modern substantive rules. The course is designed to appeal to students with an interest in comparative law – particularly in differences between the common law and the civil law. The course should also appeal to those with an interest in federalism, as overlapping state/federal maritime jurisdiction serves as an interesting case-study for the more general issue of concurrent state/federal jurisdiction under the Constitution. Modern case-law will focus upon the scope of modern federal admiralty jurisdiction – as well as upon the substantive rules for cargo-carriage, leasing of ships under charterparties, salvage, general average, towage, pilotage, and marine insurance. As much modern substantive law is governed by treaty and/or international business practices, the course should be useful for students who intend to practice either in the U.S. or abroad.
Textbooks and Other Materials
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First Class Readings
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