Monday, April 12, 2010

I Am So Sick of Federal Legislation Being Rammed Down Our Throats!

Are yachts undergoing land-based repairs "vessels"?

Do bears....well, you get the picture.

That's the essence of today's 11th Circuit opinion that provides a comprehensive and very interesting history of the development of maritime liens.

It makes total sense, but I never really understood that the reason maritime liens exist is to allow ships to get quick repairs wherever they are, without having to provide cash or other security not readily available far away from home port:
Maritime liens originated, in part, “in a desire to protect the ship,” which is “peculiarly subject to vicssitudes which would compel abandonment . . . unless repairs and supplies were promptly furnished.” Id. at 9, 41 S. Ct. at 3. Ships braved the danger of the seas dependent on a solid construction and a skillful crew. Should structure or seaman fail, ships had little to compensate for the loss and, at times, had to seek the help of strangers. Ships, however, often lacked items of sufficient value to offer in exchange for the help they needed.

Because a ship was often in need of repairs and necessaries while it was away from its home port and without large sums of money on board, maritime liens enabled persons in charge of the ship to use the value of the vessel itself as a pledge of credit in order to secure the work and parts it needed during the voyage.
However, each state and jurisdiction had their own maritime lien law, creating confusion and contradictory legal obligations:
It is not surprising that, given the historical nature and special needs of the shipping industry, maritime lien laws are no recent development. Maritime liens existed in Continental Europe and first emerged in the United States through state and common law. See 2 Benedict on Admiralty §§ 36–37 at 3-21 to 3-22; § 41, at 3-44 (7th ed. rev. 1998). This decentralized development of the lien laws resulted in a “confusing collection of individual statutes enacted over . . . centuries—each enacted to solve some particular problem of the day.” See H. R. REP. NO. 100-918, at 11 (1988). The statutes were “poorly organized, duplicative, often obsolete, and difficult to understand and apply.” Id.

The competing legal regimes governing maritime liens were further complicated by geographical variance. Different locations had different rules governing whether liens could attach, depending on, for example, a ship’s origin and port of service. See H. R. REP. NO. 46-1698 at 1–3 (1880). The laws also differed as to when during the repair process a lien could attach. Id. Congress recognized the need to unify and simplify the law. See The Gertrude v. Coward, 38 F.2d 946, 948 (5th Cir. 1930) (noting one of the purposes of the Act of June 23, 1910 was to replace state maritime-lien statutes with a single, national law). In 1910, Congress passed the first version of the Federal Maritime Lien Act, establishing a uniform national maritime lien system.
Hold on -- federal legislation that imposed uniform national requirements on differing and contradictory state regimes??

Goddarn federal do-gooders running roughshod over individual states' rights?

Where are the teabaggers when you really need them?



Anonymous said...

Taft was the last President to have facial hair.

Anonymous said...

Taft was north of 300lbs and needed a special bathtub installed to soak his smelly arse. Oh wait maybe that was Bubba.

Anonymous said...

WHo was that lawyer waiting in line at the University Chicken joint across from UM? He was first in line for it to open at 11am and then was stuffing his face with chicken and then was loudly complaining that there wasn't enough curry sauce.

Anonymous said...


Anonymous said...



South Florida Lawyers said...

3:40, guilty as charged.

First of all I was hungry, secondly I have little patience for peons, third I was a little bit randy.

Hope this helps.

Anonymous said...

shumie shumie shumie.
shumie shumie shumie.
shumie shumie shumie.
shumie shumie shumie.

Anonymous said...

Taft=Garvin but less fat.

Shoot The Lawyers said...

1:44 raises an interesting issue. No presidents from Washington up to LIncoln had any facial here. Lincoln was the first to sport any facial here, a beard. His successor, Andrew Johnson, was clean shaven. All of the next six presidents (Grant, Hayes,Garfield, Arthur, Cleveland, and Harrison, all had either a mustache or beard. William McKinley, elected in 1900, was clean shaven. The next two presidents, TR and Taft, had mustaches. Since then, every president has whipped out the razor in the morning. But there was almost an exception. Thomas Dewey ran in 1944 and 1948 sporting a mustache. Truman joked that it made him look like the proverbial statuesque man on the wedding cake. I can think of no other serious presidential candidate in the past seventy years who has had any facial hair (sorry Bill Richardson, you were never a serious contender).

swlip said...

Thanks, SFL. I can always count on you to raise a good straw man.

South Florida Lawyers said...

Hey, thanks swlip!

Godwhacker said...

And here I always thought "throat ramming" costs extra...

Anonymous said...

swlip, which liberal judges have been appointed by Governor Crist?

Oscar said...

This will not really have effect, I consider like this.
recipes with ground beef | cute clothing | candy buffets

Fawad Tariq said...

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