A South Florida native, J. Michael (Mike) Pennekamp’s practice focuses on providing counsel to clients on virtually every aspect of the maritime and aviation industries. Mike presently serves as outside counsel to several international and domestic marine and airline passenger and cargo carriers and related companies assisting them with transactions, international and domestic regulatory compliance and administrative actions while maintaining a heavy litigation practice.
As the Chair of the firm's Insurance Practice Group, Mike handles multiple insurance issues including commercial and personal lines; directors and officers (D&O) and errors and omission (E&O); general liability; and professional, employment and products liability. He has counseled clients on primary, umbrella, excess policies and reinsurance; captive, self-insured and surplus lines programs; and proof of claim/coverage analyses in receivership. He has litigation experience in first-party insurance bad faith litigation, third-party insurance cases, and cases involving the National Flood Insurance Program.
He also has extensive experience in large loss insurance defense litigation, mass tort litigation, catastrophe litigation, and insurance coverage litigation. He has handled all stages of litigation in hundreds of cases while defending insurers nationwide after Hurricanes striking Florida. Mike has represented nearly every major national insurer participating in the National Flood Insurance Program in the defense of claims regionally and nationally and was most recently named liaison defense counsel for all Write-Your-Own insurers in relation to the Hurricane Sandy claims filed in the Eastern District of New York.
He also represents a number of nonprofit companies and related individuals regarding insurance needs of such entities and their boards as well as casualties involving the entities and/or their employees. Mike has litigated wrongful death and other significant exposure personal injury, first and third party insurance coverage, bad faith, premises liability, general liability and homeowner association matters in Florida’s state and federal courts Representative nonprofit clients include many of the larger participants in Florida’s community based care system.
Mike is a member of the Florida Bar and is admitted to practice in the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Eleventh Circuit and the U.S. District Courts for the Southern, Middle and Northern Districts of Florida. He earned his Bachelor of Arts degree from Columbia College and his Juris Doctor degree from Florida State University College of Law. Thereafter, he served as a Judicial Clerk to the Honorable Peter T. Fay of the Eleventh Circuit Court of Appeals.
In the News
- Co-Author with Helaine S. Goodner, Wading Through The Choice Of Law Quagmire: A Guide For The Uninitiated, in LITIGATING THE AVIATION CASE 699 (Andrew J. Harakas, ed., 4th ed., 2017)
Professional Associations and Memberships
The Florida Bar
Dade County Bar Association
Fort Lauderdale Mariner's Club
Marine Industries of South Florida
Florida Yacht Broker's Association
Southeastern Admiralty Law Institute
Maritime Law Association of the United States
Aviation Insurance Association
Greater Miami Aviation Association
- Disaster Protocols Committee Member, Institute for the Advancement of the American Legal System (IAALS), University of Denver
- Panelist, "Yacht Workshop", International Marine Claims Conference, September 2016
- Moderator/Speaker, "Update on Litigation and Liability- Recent Cases That Should be in the Spotlight for Everyone", ALTA Aviation Law Americas Conference, September 2016
- Presenter, "But, I've Got The Right Of Way!", Fort Lauderdale Mariners Club Seminar, November 2015
- Panelist, "Unruly Passengers – From the Tokyo Convention to the Montreal Protocol: Is This an Adequate Solution?", ALTA Aviation Law Americas Conference, September 2014