A Practical Lesson in Maritime Law
Kim Jefferies, Senior Claims Executive and Legal Advisor, Gard Ltd, Norway
How I ended up practicing maritime law – and managing insurance claims in a small town in Norway – is a story of chance, luck and following my instincts.
My introduction to a maritime legal practice was the result of a referral in the 1980s from a mentor, George Joseph. Joseph, who at the time was chief of the Oregon Court of Appeals, introduced me to the people at Wood Tatum, a firm that represented the Norwegian company, Gard, for claims in Oregon. I knew nothing about maritime law but was intrigued by its international flavor. After six years as a partner, I had the opportunity to take a sabbatical and arranged to spend part of the time working with Gard. My husband and our 2- and 5-year-old sons spent June 1997 in Arendal, a town of 40,000 inhabitants on the southern coast of Norway. While Randy and the boys spent time sightseeing and at the beach, I wrote memos on such subjects as the application of the package limitation under the U.S. Carriage of Goods by Sea Act. Work started at 8:15 a.m. and ended at 3:30 p.m. It remained light until 11 p.m., so there was plenty of time to enjoy the Norwegian summer with my family.
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