Shipping in France

Clyde & Co LLP

Clyde & Co LLP demonstrates notable strength in insured liability claims, and assists with maritime incidents and agreement drafting as part of its broad portfolio of expertise covering contentious and non-contentious wet and dry shipping matters. Practice head Gildas Rostain's recent highlights include defending Meyer Werft and multiple insurers in litigation brought by over a thousand claimants arising from the sinking of the ferry 'Estonia' in 1994. Other clients include Bourbon Group, Chubb and XL Catlin. Rozenn Lopin is another key contact.


HFW assists with wet shipping work, where it acts for P&I clubs, underwriters and shipowners; and dry shipping matters, where it represents charterers and cargo owners. The team includes practice head Guillaume BrajeuxTimothy Clemens-Jones, who is English qualified; Stanislas Lequette, who focuses on issues involving former French colonies in North and West Africa; and tourism and cruise expert Stéphanie Schweitzer. In recent work, the practice represented P&I club Skuld in casualty procedures arising from the running aground of a container ship on a coral reef near New Caledonia; the team worked with the firm's London and Singapore offices, leveraging its international footprint. CMA CGM, Helvetia and Corsica Linea are also clients.

Ince Gordon Dadds LLP

Ince is active across contentious and non-contentious work and also has notable yachting expertise. The group's recent litigation caseload consists of mandates arising from casualties, collisions, rescue and pollution work, and non-contentious highlights include chartering issues and the construction, sale and acquisition of vessels. Practice head Jerome de Sentenac, Mathieu CroixAlexandre BesnardAymeric de Tapol and Vy-Loan Huynh-Olivieri form the core of the practice, and customs expert Freddy Desplanques is also noted. EDF LNG Shipping instructed the team to assist with the chartering of an LNG carrier from NYK including advising on the negotiation of the charterparty and ancillary contractual agreements. Other clients include Bouygues Travaux Publics, CMA CGM and Louis Dreyfus Armateurs. Andrew Charlier relocated to the firm's Monaco office. In July 2019 the firm changed its name and is now operating as Stream – Avocats and Solicitors.

Lewis & Co AARPI

The 'exceptionally tenacious and talented' practitioners at Lewis & Co AARPI 'really understand how to get what their clients want' and 'easily adapt to the requirements of blue-chip shipping companies' thanks to 'fantastic knowledge, which is concentrated in a small and unbelievably effective practice'. The team specialises in maritime casualty work and commercial disputes arising from shipping contracts. Practice head and managing partner Lars Lewis is English and French dual-qualified; clients state he is 'clever, disciplined and cunning', 'the worst opponent you could ever have' and 'commercially sensitive strategist'. Peter IglikowskiLeila Esnard and Guillaume de Bascher are also key names to note.

Reed Smith

Reed Smith fields a varied practice with expertise ranging from major casualty instructions to charter party disputes and pollution-related litigation. Practice head Ana Atallah and counsels Luc GrelletAndrew Tetley and Emmanuelle Faivre are all experienced in arbitration proceedings.

Richemont Nicolas & Associés

Richemont Nicolas & Associés focuses on wet shipping mandates with notable expertise in Africa-related instructions. Clients include insurance companies, shipowners, shipping agents and cargo owners. Henri de Richemont and Christophe Nicolas are the key contacts.

Villeneau Rohart Simon

Villeneau Rohart Simon handles wet and dry shipping work, and assists clients with a variety of maritime law issues including collision and pollution-related matters, carriage of goods disputes, and the construction, sale and purchase of vessels, particularly mega yachts. Jean-Serge RohartPatrick Simon, Benoît Pincemin, Bertrand Coste and Sébastien Lootgieter are the main practitioners across the firm's Paris and Marseille offices.