John is a partner in the assets & structured finance group.

John regularly represents financial institutions, private equity and other investment funds as well as foreign and domestic owners and operators in the international shipping markets, with an emphasis on the negotiation and documentation of cross-border asset-backed structured transactions and joint ventures.

John is admitted to practice law in New York and the Republic of the Marshall Islands, and advises and issues opinions relating to entities formed in the Marshall Islands and Liberia.

John is recognized as an Expert Based Abroad in Marshall Islands law by Chambers Global 2021 and as a leading asset finance lawyer by legal directories Chambers USA, Legal 500 US and IFLR1000.

Chambers USA notes that he is “highly knowledgeable about shipping company legal requirements across multiple areas, such as finance, asset sale and purchase, risk management and organization structure.” and Legal 500 quoting one client in saying “John Benson truly understands our needs and mindset, and delivers resources across the firm to service us. He understands how we think and is able to align accordingly but also push back if we, as clients, are missing a key point.”

Show related areas
  • Advising a US private equity fund on the structuring and execution of the sale and leaseback of six vessels.
  • Advising a private equity fund on the structuring and acquisition of multiple vessels and direct implementation of a newbuilding program.
  • Advising a private equity fund on the acquisition, financing and commercial arrangements in respect of two containerships.
  • Advising an operating company in respect of debt restructuring.
  • Advising a private equity fund on the sale of assets acquired through bankruptcy proceedings.


  1. 2002 · Villanova University School of Law, J.D.
  2. 1999 · Villanova University, B.D.

memberships & associations

  1. Maritime Law Association of the United States
  2. New York State Bar Association
  3. Association of the Bar of the City of New York
  4. Member of the Board of Directors of the Norwegian-American Chamber of Commerce