Steven L. Snell, Esq.

Of Counsel, Commercial Law, Maritime Law, Appellate Litigation


Steven L. Snell, Of Counsel – Commercial Law, Maritime Law, Appellate Litigation, Bio Photo

For the past three decades, Steven L. Snell has practiced and published in the fields of commercial law, antitrust, environmental law, and maritime law.

Since 2005, he has served multiple terms as both vice-chair and co-chair of the International Transportation Committee of the American Bar Association’s Section of International Law, elected by his peers to track recent developments in law regulating maritime commerce and international trade and to design and present programs on these developments for the practicing bar.

Steven has drafted contracts for international sales transactions under both the U.N. Convention on International Sales of Goods and Article 2 of the Uniform Commercial Code. His experience in maritime law is broad-based, spanning common and private carriage, salvage, charterparties, marine insurance, general average, limitation of liability, maritime liens, and environmental torts.

On the transactional side, his background in international commercial arbitration and scholarly research in conflict-of-laws have proven invaluable, providing insight in the drafting both of arbitration and forum-selection clauses, and of choice-of-law clauses.

In 1996, Steven became the first author to address the development of competition policy in the People’s Republic of China in a law review article published in English, and his subsequent work on extraterritorial application of domestic antitrust legislation has been featured in numerous presentations at international-law conferences, as well as in numerous books and scholarly articles.

The author of two books on maritime jurisdiction, since 2007 Steven has served on the faculty of American University, Washington College of Law as an adjunct professor, teaching both Admiralty and Law of the Sea. In addition, he has designed and taught courses in international law, environmental policy, and U.S. constitutional law at Johns Hopkins University, Georgetown University, and Bryn Mawr College. His second book, Courts of Admiralty and the Common Law, was cited in the federal district court’s opinion in the Deepwater Horizon case, on point of constitutional law.

In 2012, Steven was elected as a “Proctor in Admiralty” by the Maritime Law Association of the United States for his contributions to scholarship in the field. He serves on the Committee on Uniformity of U.S. Maritime Law, as well as on the Committee on International Organizations, Conventions, and Standards.

In private practice, he has assisted the Canadian government on issues arising under the United Nations Agreement on Straddling and Highly Migratory Fish Stocks, and in 2021 worked with NGOs seeking to preserve the endangered North Atlantic Right Whale through adoption of revised traffic separation schemes under the Ports and Waterways Safety Act.

Steven is an active member of the American Bar Association’s Antitrust Section, The International Law Association (American Branch), and the Selden Society (devoted to the study of the history of the common law). He also serves on the Art and Cultural Heritage Law Committee of the ABA’s Section of International Law and teaches courses on protection of undersea cultural heritage, including archaeological sites and historic shipwrecks.

Steven is admitted to practice law in New York and the District of Columbia, and before the United States Court of International Trade, United States Circuit Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit, and the United States Supreme Court.

He holds a J.D. from Northwestern University School of Law; an LL.M. and J.S.D. from New York University School of Law; and a B.A. in Classics: Greco-Roman Archaeology from Johns Hopkins University.

Practice Areas:
  • Cross-Border
  • Antitrust
  • U.S. Supreme Court
  • U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit
  • U.S. Court of International Trade
  • New York
  • District of Columbia


  • J.S.D., New York University School of Law
  • LL.M., Concentrations in Trade Regulation & Private International Law, New York University School of Law
  • Juris Doctor, Northwestern University School of Law
  • Ph.D Program, Classics, The Johns Hopkins University
  • Bachelor of Arts (B.A.), Classics, The Johns Hopkins University