Each mode of transportation logistics requires assistance to meet the demands of delivering commercial goods in a timely and cost-efficient manner. Frantz Ward’s Transportation team serves a diverse base of clients in matters that spread across the United States, Canada and Mexico with far-reaching implications within these organizations by providing more effective support for corporate strategies and thus ensuring continued appraisal of opportunities over the long run. We handle every surface transportation issue imaginable, including licensing, enforcement, and other administrative proceedings before governmental agencies; defense of worker and third-party personal injury and property damage claims arising out of accidents; claims and litigation involving cargo loss or damage; disputes over freight charges; and controversies over federal preemption of state laws affecting transportation. We also advise about laws and regulations concerning operational safety and hazardous materials.
At Frantz Ward we represent a variety of motor carriers, rail carriers, and maritime carriers. However, we also represent a broad array of “freight intermediaries,” e.g., transportation brokers, 3PLs, surface freight forwarders, ocean freight forwarders, and non-vessel operating common carriers. We represent warehousing entities up and down the supply chain including numerous shippers and consignees. With our broad-based expertise, and intensive working knowledge of all aspects, and all entities, in the transportation continuum, Frantz Ward can serve its clients in an extraordinary way.
Frantz Ward and its transportation attorneys are intricately involved in the transportation industry as demonstrated by its involvement in the following associations:
- ALFA International Transportation Group
- American Trucking Associations
- Truckload Carriers Association
- Ohio Trucking Association
- National Tank Truck Carriers Association
- Specialized Carriers and Rigging Association
- Customized Logistics and Delivery Association
- Transportation Lawyer’s Association
Government and Regulatory Affairs
People, goods, and services move across highways, ports, rail, and public transit every day, with each segment being highly regulated and funded by local, state, and federal authorities. The team at Frantz Ward provides transportation, trucking, and logistics clients with guidance and insights to manage risk, understand policy implications, and implement effective strategies to produce desired outcomes associated with local, state, and federal regulation of those industries. (e.g. U.S. DOT, FMCSA,PHMSA) Our professionals serve as a bridge between the federal government and transportation, trucking, and logistics businesses interested in selling goods and services to governmental entities and municipalities and working with large, established players as well as small, emerging companies and organizations across a variety of industries providing counsel in every aspect of the government procurement process.
We also have specific experience in all types of contracts up and down the transportation continuum. We regularly assist our clients with the drafting, negotiation, and revision of shipper-carrier contracts, broker-carrier contracts, broker-shipper contracts, warehouseman contracts, cross-docking arrangements, drayage contracts, customs port-terminal operational contracts, global services agreements, and the plethora of other transportation and logistics contracts in the industry.Frantz Ward is also well experienced at preparing and negotiating warehouse operating and pick-&-pack agreements for major distribution center activities for both domestic and international shipments in addition to mainstream domestic motor carrier and rail related transportation and broker agreements.The group also has extensive experience in preparing and negotiating multimodal transportation contracts for shipments that never touch the United States and move point to point between countries throughout the world, particularly with respect to cargo with governing law provisions based upon treaties and conventions.
The transportation and logistics team at Frantz Ward is backed by our national Litigation practice. We provide high-quality legal services and help solve business problems by effective, economic case management, aggressive advocacy, and sensible, timely resolutions. Our practice and our attorneys are annually recognized among such rankings as Best Lawyers’ “Best Law Firms,” Best Lawyers in America, and Chambers USA’s “Leaders in their Field.”
Frantz Ward attorneys frequently counsel commercial transportation clients in trucking liability matters. Commercial transportation is broadly regulated by a web of local, state, and federal regulatory and statutory schemes, which makes defending commercial transportation cases uniquely challenging. A broad spectrum of clients rely on our advice to defend wrongful death matters, catastrophic injuries, property damage, and subrogation cases.
Independent Contractor/Employee Advisement
We routinely advise clients on the use of independent contractors and owner operators in various modes of transportation throughout the United States. Our attorneys are well versed in state and federal regulations that are unique to motor carriers’ use of independent contractors and equipment owned by others in both intrastate and interstate commerce. (Ex. “Federal Leasing Regulations”) We work to provide practical and legal advice to create models that support the needs of transportation service providers.
The firm routinely assists clients with 24/7 emergency management response protocols for catastrophic accidents. Our committed Transportation industry practice has enabled us to assemble a team of attorneys and experts who can be available when our clients need them—as soon as possible after an accident occurs.
We handle every surface transportation issue imaginable, including licensing, enforcement, and other administrative proceedings before governmental agencies; defense of worker and third-party personal injury and property damage claims arising out of accidents; claims and litigation involving cargo loss or damage; disputes over freight charges; and controversies over federal preemption of state laws affecting transportation. We also advise about laws and regulations concerning operational safety and hazardous materials.
The firm represents a variety of transportation companies that ship and/or haul numerous commodities (hazardous, non-hazardous, dry bulk, liquid cargo, pharmaceuticals, etc.) in interstate and intrastate commerce. The firm advises such private and public companies on the use of a wide variety of assets within the supply chain (OTR, LTL, last mile, etc.) including commercial motor vehicles, lightweight commercial motor vehicles, dry vans, tankers, specialize trailers, chassis and containers.
Employees often possess the most important intellectual property of their employers. Accordingly, employers face both the threat of loss of valuable trade secrets and the prospect of unfair competition when employees leave. On the other side of the coin, employers seeking to improve their workforce must be careful not to become enmeshed in litigation involving a new recruit and a former employer. Our lawyers work to help employers stop theft of trade secrets, prevent violation of non-compete agreements, and avoid unnecessary controversy over new hires.
Mergers & Acquisitions
Frantz Ward’s Mergers & Acquisitions Practice provides counsel in all aspects of M&A transactions in transportation, from initial conceptualization and structuring of a transaction, through due diligence, negotiation and documentation, until consummation and closing and into post-closing transition and integration.
Our M&A practice is supplemented by the firm’s depth of experience in the variety of disciplines necessary to consummate a successful transaction (e.g., bankruptcy and creditor’s rights, employee benefits, intellectual property, labor and employment, real estate, and tax).
Frantz Ward’s M&A Practice regularly provides counsel to clients regarding and in connection with:
- Mergers and Acquisitions
- Spin-offs and Carve-Outs
- Private Equity Investments
- Corporate Divestitures
- Joint Ventures and Strategic Alliances
- Restructurings and Workouts
Frantz Ward represents numerous private and public companies involved in the transportation and logistics industry throughout the United States, Mexico and Canada. The firm regularly advises motor carriers, brokers, freight forwarders, intermodal equipment providers and shippers on a variety of transportation specific issues within the supply chain including:
- U.S Department of Transportation (U.S. DOT) regulatory compliance including Federal Motor Carrier Safety Regulations (FMCSR) and Hazardous Materials compliance
- U.S. DOT and Intrastate Operating Authority (Private & For-Hire)
- U.S. DOT Mock Audits
- Compliance with State and Local regulations including IFTA and IRP
- Transportation Agreements (Broker/Carrier, Shipper/Carrier, Warehousing, etc.)
- Labor and Employment Counseling and Litigation
- Independent Contractor Agreements and Structuring
- Workers' Compensation Claims
- Worker Misclassification Claims
- Employment Agreements (Non-Compete/Non-Solicit)
- Mergers and Acquisitions
- Bankruptcy/Creditors' Rights
- Cargo Claims and Disputes