We are a close-knit team and pride ourselves in providing responsive, practical and commercially sound support to our clients

Tim Cocks


Tim has practised most exclusively in all aspects of maritime law, admiralty law and marine insurance.  He has practical experience in all aspects of the International Group of Protection & Indemnity Clubs, having worked for Thomas R Miller &Son, the Managers of the United Kingdom P&I for 2 years in London. He acts for most of the International Group Clubs in addition to many hull underwriters and major local ship builders and has extensive experience in maritime related litigation, maritime commercial transactions and maritime crisis management.

He has a close involvement in the livestock export trade from Australian acting for all of the major Australian exporters of livestock.  From 1985 to 1987 he acted for Kookaburra syndicate in the Fremantle defence of the Americas Cup.  Tim had been identified by his peers as a leading lawyer in the area of admiralty, shipping and maritime law (Doyle’s Guide 2021).  Going back to the 1980s, he together with his business partner, Graeme Macnish, built and operated four 23-metre prawn trawlers in the Northern Prawn Fishery of Australia.  This has provided enduring useful hands-on practical experience with respect to ship owning financing and management.  Aside from the law he has been a recreational boat owner and yachtsman and bred Angus cattle for the past 25 years.


+61 418 925 546

Ashley Nichols


Ashley has practiced in a wide range of commercial matters and marine and non-marine litigation for almost 40 years.

These include ship sale, purchase, chartering and finance, real and personal property sale, purchase and leasing (including old system land), real and personal property mortgages, securities and finance, joint ventures, shareholders agreements, options tendering, Australian Consumer Law etc.

Other marine matters include all aspects of protection and indemnity, casualty (including damaged cargo, ship collision, damage to fixed installations, pollution etc) and extensive dealings with regulators, ship arrest and security, wreck removal, stowaways and deserters.

He has investigated and advised on hundreds of casualties involving destruction and damage to property, death, illness and injury and pollution.

More recently he has been significantly involved in practical, legal and regulatory issues relating to vessels and their crews and passengers and COVID-19.


+61 417 959 935

Ashwin Nair


Ashwin practices mainly in shipping, admiralty and marine insurance, with clients including P&I Clubs, ship owners and charterers, and underwriters in the shipping, offshore, commodities, and commercial fishing industries. He previously worked as a claims executive at an International Group P&I Club in Singapore, handling the entire range of P&I claims and advising extensively on defence matters.

A considerable part of his practice is marine casualty management. He has been involved in numerous shipping accidents and casualties especially for P&I Clubs and owners in the Asia Pacific region. Some recent examples include the capsize and sinking of a fully-laden container vessel in port, capsize of a jack-up barge while under tow on the high seas, multiple groundings after a cyclone, and subsea gas pipeline damage caused by dragging anchor.

On the disputes front, he has acted as instructor or as counsel in a number of significant Australian cases with a shipping or admiralty dimension including, Sam Hawk v Reiter Petroleum (recognition of foreign maritime liens), CMA CGM v Chou Shan (forum non conveniens), Guardian Offshore v Saab Seaeye Leopard (scope of Admiralty jurisdiction over ROVs), and Animals Australia v Secretary, Dept of Agriculture (judicial review of export decision following COVID-related delay).

His practice also includes advisory/transactional work. Some recent examples include advising on the securitisation aspects of US$50 million resource offtake arrangement, advising on the hire of support vessels for a drilling programme in the Bass Strait, and advising on the validity of and challenge to aspects of commercial managed fisheries regulations.

He regularly presents at seminars and conferences (most recently on limitation of liability issues arising out of the Ever Given grounding for the Maritime Law Association of Australia and New Zealand), and until recently, contributed an annual paper on Australian law developments to the Tulane Maritime Law Journal together with Professor Kate Lewins.

Ashwin is a member of the national Board of the Maritime Law Association of Australia and New Zealand and on the Editorial Board of the Australia and New Zealand Maritime Law Journal. He is also a member of the Law Society of Western Australia and the Asian Australian Lawyers’ Association.


+61 411 786 671

Waqas Naseem

Associate Director

Commenced as a restricted practitioner with the firm in 1999, becoming an associate partner in 2004. He was subsequently admitted to partnership in 2007.

He has over 20 years of insurance advisory and litigation experience in the Federal, Supreme, District and Magistrates Court including state tribunals, domestic and international arbitrations (LMAA/LCIA), coronial courts covering both contentious and non-contentious work in a variety of areas including shipping, admiralty, insurance, industrial diseases, fisheries, personal injury, workers compensation, live export, animal cruelty, employment, corporations, competition and consumer, occupational health & safety, regulatory, legal costs, coastal trading and national and foreign flag state shipping/superyacht registration. Waqas was recognised in Doyle’s Guide Australia as a recommended Admiralty, Shipping and Maritime lawyer in 2019.


+61 400 786 730

Julia Routley

Associate Director

Julia deals with both non-contentious and contentious matters and is admitted and has appeared as a barrister and solicitor in federal and various state jurisdictions across Australia. Her practice predominantly encompasses marine and non-marine commercial litigation, contract and transactional advice and assistance, and dispute resolution.

Her practice also includes conveyancing (real, personal and other property including shares and businesses) and wills and estate administration.

Julia has acted for and advised clients in matters including contract and charterparty disputes, cargo claims, personal injury claims, arbitration, acquisitions, security interests (including Personal Property Securities Registrar registrations), real property and strata management claims, company winding up applications, liquidation and other external administration of companies, formation and governance of corporations and other entities, carbon rights and tree plantation agreements, grants of probate and letters of administration and Family Provision applications,

Julia’s clients include persons and entities across a range of industries including shipping, insurance, fishing, building and construction (including shipbuilding), agriculture, franchise, aviation and equine.

She is a member of The Maritime Law Association of Australia and New Zealand and a committee member of the Western Australian branch of that association. Julia is also a member of the Women’s International Shipping & Trading Association.


+61 418 950 387


Founded in 1981, we are a leading Australian commercial and shipping law practice

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Our Expertise

Admiralty, Shipping and Maritime

  • Marine casualties and investigations
  • Admiralty
  • Commercial shipping
  • Marine insurance
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  • Commercial fishing – WA and Federal
  • Export control
  • Regulatory enforcement actions
  • Freedom of Information
  • Administrative review
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General Commercial

  • Commercial transactions
  • General insurance
  • Probate and estate management
  • Commercial dispute resolution
  • Property – residential, commercial
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