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Portrait of Joe Riley

Joe Riley

Managing associate



Joe is a managing associate and master mariner in the shipping team. He provides commercially focused and practical legal advice to shipowners, charterers, and international salvors on both ‘wet’ and ‘dry’ shipping matters, including collisions, salvage, and general average, as well as unsafe port claims, speed and performance disputes, demurrage disputes, off-hire disputes, and cargo claims. 

During his career so far, Joe has gained a wealth of experience acting for and representing clients in matters subject to the jurisdiction of both the High Court and London Arbitration.

Prior to studying law, Joe spent 13 years at sea, during which he sailed in the rank of captain onboard various vessels, including the AMSA ETV and the Trinity House vessel ‘Patricia’. While at sea, he also sailed onboard offshore survey and geophysical drilling vessels under charter to oil majors including BP, Shell, and Equinor, as well as passenger ro-ro vessels operated by Stena Line, and tankers operated by BP. After coming ashore, Joe was awarded the Graduate Diploma in Law from the University of East Anglia with distinction. He qualified in December 2020 and before joining Penningtons Manches Cooper, he spent six years at a boutique shipping practice, focusing mainly on dry shipping matters.

Recent work highlights

  • Acting for slot charterers in relation to a fire onboard a post-panamax container vessel.
  • Representing international salvors in relation to the LOF salvage of the stricken vessel ‘Portland Bay’.
  • Representing owners and their insurers in the High Court in relation to a collision in the Singapore Straits.
  • Acting for owners and their insurers in relation to a collision and wreck removal in the Middle East.
  • Acting for claimant owners in an unsafe port claim with a value of about US$5.4 million, brought in London Arbitration under LMAA terms.

Penningtons Manches Cooper LLP

Penningtons Manches Cooper LLP is a limited liability partnership registered in England and Wales with registered number OC311575 and is authorised and regulated by the Solicitors Regulation Authority under number 419867.

Penningtons Manches Cooper LLP