The Business of Justice

Samuel P. Blatchley

  • Partner
Rated By Super Lawyers | Rising Stars | Samuel P. Blatchley |


Samuel P. Blatchley (Sam), a longstanding member of the New England maritime bar and Proctor in Admiralty, represents clients in litigation and transactional matters with a focus on admiralty and maritime law. He represents vessel owners and operators, charterers, construction and dredging firms, bunker suppliers, freight forwarders, inland carriers, lenders, marina operators, marine surveyors, marine trades providers, stevedores, and terminal operators in maritime litigation, as well as in marine-related commercial and corporate transactions. Sam’s practice covers an array of maritime disputes, including maritime collisions and casualties, charter party and marine services agreements, personal injury and death claims, Admiralty Rules B, C, and D actions, and insurance coverage disputes. He serves as outside general counsel to a marine insurer covering, Hull & Machinery and Protection & Indemnity risks. Sam also handles maritime financing, purchase and charter, documentation, and registration matters in connection with both commercial vessels and private yachts. Prior to joining Eckland & Blando, Sam was a partner and Chair of the Admiralty and Maritime Group at a leading New England law firm and worked for an admiralty boutique firm.


Sam received his J.D. and Maritime Law Certificate from Tulane University Law School, where he was the Notes and Comments Editor of the Tulane Maritime Law Journal, and received a CALI Award in marine insurance. Before law school, Sam graduated from the University of Wisconsin at Madison with a Bachelor of Arts in History, with honors, and Political Science, with distinction. While at the University of Wisconsin, Sam was inducted into Phi Beta Kappa.

Sam is admitted to practice in Massachusetts, Maine, New York, and Rhode Island. He is also admitted to the U.S. Court of Appeals for the First Circuit and D.C. Circuit, and the U.S. District Courts for the Districts of Connecticut, Rhode Island, Eastern District of New York, Eastern District of Michigan, Western District of Michigan, and Vermont. Sam was a member of the Ad-Hoc Subcommittee for the District of Rhode Island Local Rules Review Committee, which drafted the Local Admiralty Rules for the District of Rhode Island, effective as of January 15, 2013. Sam is designated as a Proctor in Admiralty by the Maritime Law Association of the United States, served as the Chairman of the Association’s Practice and Procedure Committee, and currently serves as a member of its Board of Directors. He was also designated as a Massachusetts Super Lawyers Rising Star, Transportation and Maritime Law from 2013-2022.

In his free time, Sam is a credentialed vessel operator, an avid badger fan, and likes to spend time with his daughter Poppy.


Practice Areas

Bar Admissions

  • Massachusetts
  • U.S. District Court District of Massachusetts
  • Maine
  • U.S. District Court District of Maine
  • Rhode Island
  • U.S. District Court District of Rhode Island
  • U.S. District Court District of Connecticut
  • New York
  • United States District Court for the Eastern District of New York
  • United States District Court for District of Columbia
  • United States District Court for the Eastern District of Michigan
  • United States District Court for the Western District of Michigan
  • United States Court of Appeals for the First Circuit
  • United States District Court for the District of Vermont


  • Tulane Law School, New Orleans, Louisiana
    • J.D.
    • Honors: Maritime Law Certificate
    • Honors: CALI Award, Marine Insurance, 2007
  • University of Wisconsin, Madison, Wisconsin
    • B.A.
    • History with High Honors
    • Political Science with Distinction
    • Phi Beta Kappa
    • Hilldale Award Winner for Honors Thesis on Henry George, The Irish, and the 1886 Mayoral Election of New York City.
    • Honors: With Distinction
    • Honors: With High Honors
    • Major: History and Political Science
  • Københavns Universitet – University of Copenhagen
    • Certificate, European Commercial Law
  • Aegean Institute of the Law of the Sea and Maritime Law – Rhodes, Greece
    • Admiralty Law Courses


  • Substitute Security, In Rem Jurisdiction, Appellate Jurisdiction, and Lozman, Benedicts Maritime Bulletin, Vol. 11, No. 2, 2013

Honors & Awards

  • New England Super Lawyers Rising Star™, Transportation and Maritime Law, 2013-2022
  • Pro Bono Community Champion

Classes & Seminars

  • The Nuts and Bolts of Vessel/Permit Seizure, Maritime Law Association of the US, 2021
  • Maritime Liens & Mortgages (Guest lecture), Suffolk University Law School, 2019

Past Employment

  • Pierce Atwood LLP, Partner/ Chair of Admiralty Group, 2012 to 2017
  • Holbrook & Murphy, Partner, 2017 to 2022

Associations & Memberships

  • Maritime Law Association of the United States
    • Board of Directors, 2022-present
    • Practice & Procedure Committee
      • Chair, 2019 to 2022.
      • Vice Chair, 2016 to 2019
      • Secretary, 2015 to 2018
      • Young Lawyer Liaison, 2009 to 2015
    • Fisheries Committee
    • Marine Insurance and General Average Committee
  • Rhode Island Bar Association, Member, 2010 to Present
  • Maine Bar Association, Member, 2017 to Present
  • Mariners Club of Massachusetts, Member, 2017 to Present
  • Massachusetts Lobsterman’s Association, Member

Pro-Bono Activities

  • Kids in Need of Defense Immigration Cases, 2015 to 2017
  • Panel Counsel United States Coast Guard Office of the Chief of Administrative Law Judge, 2015 to Present

Certified Legal Specialties

  • Proctor in Admiralty, Maritime Law Association of the United States


  • MAX v. Cosco Container Lines America, Inc., et al., Civil Action No. 1:22-cv-10722-DJC (Nov. 10, 2022) (denying temporary restraining order sought against vessel owner on allegations that client was violating the Endangered Species Act)
  • Global Montello Group Corp. v. Seaboard Marine, Ltd., Inc. d/b/a Seaboard Marine, Ltd., Civil Action No. 21-11363-WGY (D. Mass. February 1, 2022) (in Declaratory Judgment Action, granting Motion for Judgment on the Pleadings and declaring that Global’s incorporated by reference Bunker Supply contract governed the relationship of the parties, that Global had no duty to appear or defend Seaboard pursuant to Seaboard’s demand that Global be “vouched in” to London Arbitration commenced by owners against Seaboard as time charterers, and that Seaboard’s vessel damage and loss hire claims were barred by the terms of the Bunker Supply Contract and the maritime economic loss doctrine)
  • Atlantic Specialty Insurance Co. v. Karl’s Boat Shop, Inc., 480 F.Supp.3d 322 (D. Mass. 2020) (granting Summary Judgement to client in Declaratory Judgment Action and holding marina policy was maritime contract and that the policy was void under the maritime doctrine of uberrimae fidei and no coverage was provided to cover damage to multiple vessels stored in a barn)
  • Cashman Equipment Corp. v. American Marine Corporation, 471 F.Supp.3d 351 (D. Mass. 2020) (granting Summary Judgement to client and enforcing the “knock-for-knock” provision of BIMCO TOWHIRE exculpating client for claimed damages in excess of $1,000,000 during Winter Storm Grayson)
  • Global Companies, LLC & others v. HOP Energy, LLC & another, Civil Action No. 16-03347-E, Suffolk Superior Court, Commonwealth of Massachusetts, October 1, 2019 (denying opposing party’s Motion for Summary Judgment and granting client’s Cross – Motion for Summary for failure to obtain contractually required insurance coverage and resulting in Judgment for client in the amount of $650,598.07 plus interest)
  • Woods Hole Oceanographic Inst. v. ATS Specialized, Inc., 2021 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 158516 (D. Mass. Aug. 20, 2021) (holding that in a case which arose from substantial damage done to submarine during its transport, plaintiffs sued for breach of contract, and liability under Carmack Amendment, to extent defendants sought to limit entirety of potential liability of client, defendants’ motion was denied as there remained genuine issues of material fact as to total damages suffered by client)
  • In re Victory Chimes, Inc., 2021 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 82660 (D. Me. Apr. 30, 2021) (holding that client was entitled to maintain limitation action under the Limitation Act of 1851 and entering a default against non-answering parties)
  • Coastal Marine Management, LLC d/b/a Boston Harbor Shipyard & Marina v. Additional Return, LLC, 411 F.Supp.3d 118 (D. Mass. 2019) (granting order that client was entitled to seek unpaid custody costs from mortgagee, that mortgagee was responsible for its pro rata share of custody costs, and that client was entitled to an award of prejudgment interest)
  • Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution v. ATS Specialized, Inc., 2019 WL 1276124 (D. Mass. Mar. 20, 2019) (sustaining client’s objection to Magistrate Judge’s Report & Recommendation and ordering that client’s claims for unfair and deceptive practices in connection with the destruction of the submersible Deep Sea Challenger were not preempted by federal law; allowing client’s claims against Australian government Museum for damage to the submersible Deep Sea Challenger; allowing client’s claims against freight forwarder for damage to the submersible Deep Sea Challenger)
  • Coastal Marine Management, LLC d/b/a Boston Harbor Shipyard & Marina v. Additional Return, LLC, 2018 WL 6727056 (D. Mass. Dec. 20, 2018) (granting order that client was entitled to the proceeds of the sale of a seized vessel)
  • Anderson Trucking Service, Inc. v. Eagle Underwriting Group, Inc., 2018 A.M.C. 2802 (D. Conn. 2018) (dismissing claims against clients under the Carriage of Goods By Sea Act for lack of personal jurisdiction)
  • The Hanover Insurance Group, Inc. v. Raw Seafoods, Inc., 2017 A.M.C. 1950 (Mass. App. Ct. Apr. 26, 2017) (holding that damage to scallops at processing facility was a covered occurrence under the client’s insurance policy)
  • In the matter of L&G Fisheries, LLC, 2015 A.M.C. 2179 (E.D.N.Y. 2015)(holding that client fishing vessel owner was entitled to proceed under the Shipowner’s Limitation of Liability Act and that liability under that Act would be decided before a Judge rather than a jury)
  • Summitbridge Credit Investments, III, LLC v. Hunt Marine I, LLC, 2014 WL 55105 (D.R.I. 2014) (holding that client was entitled to a judgment entitling him to take control of a tug company and its assets)
  • Barsom v. P/V Aquidneck Ferry, 2013 WL 5447551 (D.R.I. Sept. 30, 2013) (holding that a transfer of title agreement conferred admiralty jurisdiction sufficient to invoke Rule D of the Supplemental Admiralty Rules where client sought to recover legal title to vessel that was wrongfully deprived)