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Jack Vayda has focused his practice on international trade, purchase, sale, transportation and insurance of physical products for over 35 years. He has developed an expertise in the litigation, arbitration, investigation and resolution of marine casualties (fires, explosions, sinkings, failures), carriage and charter problems, oil spill disasters, commodity trading problems, admiralty and maritime law, bankruptcy and insolvency. He has represented a broad array of clients, including major energy companies, oil and other commodity trading businesses, independent vessel owners, charterers, P&I Clubs, managers and foreign governments, in dispute resolution (before many different courts and arbitral bodies such as SMA, AAA, ICE, ICDR) and contract formation to avoid disputes in the United States and abroad.

Jack’s extensive knowledge of admiralty and maritime law led him to be an Adjunct Professor of Admiralty and Maritime Law at the College of Insurance (now part of St. John’s University), and his extensive environmental practice led to his appointment as Chairman of the Maritime Law Association’s Marine Ecology Committee. He frequently speaks around the world, lecturing on a variety of topics. Recent engagements include the International Congress of Maritime Arbitrators in Vancouver, where he lectured to several hundred international delegates and judges on the developing topic of Third Party Ship Management; the Lloyd’s List Annual Chemical and Product Tankers Conference in London; the Instituto Iberoamericano de Derecho Maritimo conference in Argentina speaking on port safety legislation; the 28th Annual Fuel Oil/Energy Buyers’ Conference speaking on freight transportation contracts; the American Marine Insurance Forum, where he conducted a seminar on due diligence and risk analysis to cargo and hull underwriters; BIMCO where he lectured on dangerous cargoes and the Society of Maritime Arbitrators, where he taught a new members workshop on the power of arbitrators to grant security.

Jack has received the highest possible rating from industry publications such as Martindale-Hubbell, Super Lawyer (New York Times), Best Lawyer (U.S. News and World Report), Leading Shipping and Maritime Lawyers (Euromoney) for many years. Jack’s prior firm, Nourse & Bowles LLP was named as a 2013 New York area Top Ranked Law Firm as one of only 147 law firms in the New York area having 33% of its practicing attorneys receive the AV Preeminent rating (combined award of New York Magazine/New York Law Journal/American Lawyer/Corporate Counsel/The National Law Journal).

Jack was born in Brazil, spent years throughout Latin America and can get by in Portuguese, Spanish and French.


McLaughlin & Stern New York Area 2021 "Best Lawyers"    Trust & Estates Randolph Harris James M. Kosakow John C. Novogrod Barbara A. Sloan Amy…

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Jack Vayda taught the course on charter parties in April at the highly regarded Faculty of Law of the University of Aix-Marseille, Centre de Droit…

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McLaughlin and Stern is excited to announce that all of the partners and associates of Nourse & Bowles LLP have joined McLaughlin and Stern. Nourse…

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  • Albany Law School of Union University (J.D. 1975)
  • New York University Graduate School of Business Administration (Core Courses of M.B.A. Program)
  • Dartmouth College (A.B. with high honors 1972)


  • Brazil

Bar Admissions

  • All New York State Courts
  • United States Supreme Court
  • United States Court of Appeals (Second Circuit)
  • United States Court of International Trade
  • United States District Courts (Southern District of New York; Eastern District of New York)


  • Past Chairman, Marine Ecology Committee, Maritime Law Association of the United States
  • Instituto Iberoamericano de Derecho Maritimo
  • Past United Nations Interne
  • World Association of Former United Nations Internes and Fellows (Founding Director)

Spoken Languages

  • Portuguese
  • Spanish
  • French