• New Jersey
  • New York
  • Supreme Court of the United States
  • U.S. District Court - District of Connecticut
  • U.S. District Court - Eastern District of New York
  • U.S. District Court - New Jersey
  • U.S. District Court - Southern District of New York
  • United States Court of Appeals for the Eleventh Circuit
  • United States Court of Appeals for the Fourth Circuit
  • United States Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit
  • United States Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit
  • United States Court of Appeals for the Sixth Circuit


  • St. John's University School of Law, JD
  • State University of New York at Maritime College, BE
Download V-Card

William R. Bennett III


New York, NY v. +1.212.885.5152 f. +1.917.332.3858

William Bennett is a member of our Maritime Emergency Response Team (“MERT”).

William (Bill) R. Bennett, III concentrates his practice in international and maritime litigation and alternative dispute resolution.  He has experience litigating and arbitrating all types of marine and shore-based disputes, including:

  • contract disputes
  • insurance coverage issues
  • personal injury
  • wrongful death
  • charter party disputes
  • groundings
  • strandings
  • sinkings
  • collisions
  • salvage
  • fire and cargo disputes

Mr. Bennett has also served as arbitrator and mediator for personal injury and contract disputes.

Mr. Bennett obtained his Unlimited Third Mate’s license from the United States Coast Guard. He worked aboard various vessels in the capacity of Third Mate, Second Mate (limited tonnage), and Master (limited tonnage), including oil tankers, ocean-going tugs, dredges, and yachts.

Mr. Bennett is a frequent presenter and has recently spoken on topics such as "The Staten Island and SeaStreak Ferry Casualties: Pointers on How to Deal With the Press, National Transportation Safety Board, and United States Coast Guard" for the New York City Bar Association, "Protecting Maritime Liens in U.S. Bankruptcy Cases" at the 8th International Conference of Maritime Law, and "Arrest and Foreclosure of Vessels in the United States (incl. Bankruptcy)" at Marine Money 2013.


  • Successfully represented a Swiss coal trader in the Eastern District of Virginia obtain a multi-million judgment at trial against alter ego entities; successfully collected the judgment by selling at auction a capesize bulker owned and operated by one of the alter ego companies.
  • Successfully represented a tug operator obtain a judgment at trial in the Northern District of Ohio for custodia legis costs exceeding $350,000.
  • Successfully represented a seafood importer avoid a package limitation and recover a settlement in excess of $1,000,000 against a defendant warehouse for damage to frozen shrimp.
  • Represented the master of a passenger ferry following an accident resulting in multiple fatalities and injuries; taking part in successful plea negotiations without incarceration and negotiations with USCG to maintain his license.
  • Represented one of the largest Japanese shipowners in Rule B and Rule C proceedings and its subsequent bankruptcy filing; successfully obtaining a release of its vessel and assets.
  • Obtained two defense verdicts for two separate vessel owners in claims for passenger personal injury.
  • Successfully defended an international freight forwarder at trial for a claim arising from the loss of a full container of wearing apparel.
  • Successfully represented a coal trader in obtaining a recovery for breach of an FFA contract against vessel operators by filing a Rule B proceeding against affiliated companies under the theory of alter ego.


  • AV Preeminent®, listed in Martindale-Hubbell®
  • 2013–2016, Super Lawyers

A description of the standard or methodology on which the accolades are based can be found here.

No aspect of this advertisement has been approved by the Supreme Court of New Jersey.