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George K. Kontakis

Fax +1.212.536.3901

George K. Kontakis is a New York litigation attorney and a member of K&L Gates LLP’s Maritime Practice Group. His practice encompasses a broad range of domestic and international commercial and criminal matters, including MARPOL investigations, charter party disputes, P&I and FD&D matters, maritime collisions, spills and casualties, vessel sales and purchases, insurance coverage disputes, and attachment and arrest proceedings.

Mr. Kontakis regularly works with global clients providing advice and strategy in all aspects of complex maritime criminal, civil, and environmental matters. He has significant experience in conducting onboard investigations for both criminal and civil matters relating to the U.S. Coast Guard and Department of Justice, protecting the rights of vessel owners, operators, and crewmembers, and he has concluded more than $400M in vessel and yacht transactions.

Prior to law school, Mr. Kontakis earned his Bachelor of Science Degree in Marine Transportation (cum laude) at the U.S. Merchant Marine Academy at Kings Point, as well as an unlimited U.S. Coast Guard Third Officer merchant mariner’s license and commission in the U.S. States Navy. Following graduation, Mr. Kontakis spent several years working as a dry cargo shipbroker with a highly regarded New York based global shipbrokerage firm and as acting Chartering Manager of a New Jersey based Operator. Mr. Kontakis is also an avid off-shore sailboat competitor, having been awarded The Eugene F. Moran Award upon graduation from USMMA.


  • Chambers USA, ranked nationwide in Transportation: Shipping/Maritime: Litigation (New York) – Associates to Watch
  • Legal 500 United States - ranked as a “Next Generation Lawyer” for Transport: shipping category
  • Matthew I. DeLuca Sr. award for excellence in chartering and brokerage studies
  • Eugene F. Moran award for overall achievement as an offshore sailing team skipper

Professional/Civic Activities

  • Maritime Law Association
  • Connecticut Maritime Association 
  • American Bar Association
  • New York Bar Association