Coastal & Shoreland


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"They have a very deep understanding of processes and the law. They make it understandable for us, and they are good communicators."
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Analysis and discussion of legal issues pertaining to the environment and natural resources.
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Recognized as a Top Ranked firm in Chambers USA 2018.
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Recognized in the 2017 U.S. News - Best Lawyers "Best Law Firms" rankings.


The property along New England’s coastline, lakes, ponds, rivers and streams is not only beautiful and valuable, it is also subject to an array of federal, state and local environmental and land-use controls. Special rules apply to all kinds of activities on coastal and shoreland property, including:

  • Construction, replacement or enlargement of houses and other structures
  • Construction of docks, piers, revetments and seawalls
  • Changes from one type of land use to another (e.g., residential to commercial)
  • Maintenance and clearing of trees and other vegetation
  • Beach nourishment projects
  • Use and ownership of intertidal land
  • Public access to coastal and shoreland areas

These uses may trigger the need for approvals from the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, state Departments of Environmental Protection, and local boards and commissions. In addition, any development in FEMA-identified floodplain triggers issues related to floodplain permits and insurance.

The attorneys in Verrill Dana’s Coastal & Shoreland Practice Group are experienced in all facets of coastal and shoreland property ownership. We help coastal and shoreland landowners use and enjoy their property to the fullest extent, whether that means development, resource conservation or protection of property rights. When coastal and shoreland land use disputes, whether with a neighbor or a government entity, cannot be settled through other means, we establish and enforce our clients’ rights through litigation and administrative enforcement proceedings.


  • Counsel
    T: (207) 253-4926