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Recreational Sailboat vs. Tugboat with Barge: Who Has the Right of Way?

I own a sailboat that I keep at a marina in San Diego. We had an encounter in the bay last month with a tugboat that was pushing a barge, and there was some disagreement among our crew as to who had the right of way. We were making way under sail only -- and, as such, I believe that we had the right of way over the tug, which is basically just a power boat. Several of my crew are under the impression that the tug had the right of way since, as a commercial vessel underway with a barge, it would be considered a “restricted” vessel under the Rules of the Road. Which of us has the correct answer?


Trying to Sell a Boat When No One Is Alive to Sign the Bill of Sale

My father passed away last month and I am working to get his affairs in order. He owned a sailboat, which he purchased three years ago. But after his ...

Must Marine Insurance Value Be Based on a Boat’s Purchase Price?

I am applying for insurance on a boat that I just purchased. The insurance applications require a lot of information, but I was wondering about the si ...

Are Boating Anglers Liable for Injuries Caused by a Trolled Fishing Line?

On a recent trip to Catalina, we were motoring our inflatable dinghy outside of the moorings, but fairly close to the harbor. Another boat passed in f ...

What Rules Determine a Race Committee Boat’s Liability in a Collision?

I am on the race management committee for my yacht club and I have a question concerning possible exposure of the club and its volunteers to liability ...

Is an MCA License Adequate to Captain a Foreign-Built Charter Boat?

I am considering the purchase of a foreign-built yacht that I would like to operate as a charter yacht in California. The boat is now U.S.-flagged wit ...

Is There a Statute of Limitations for a Maritime Mechanic’s Lien?

Several months ago, I inherited a classic boat from my father when he passed away. I am interested in selling the boat -- but when my yacht broker rev ...

Is a USCG Certificate of Inspection Required for a Nonprofit Group’s Boat?

I volunteer for a nonprofit organization in Northern California whose services include taking inner-city kids and their parents out for tours of San F ...

If an Insurer Denies a Claim on a Sunken Boat, What Can the Lender Do?

I purchased a vessel and originated a loan with an institutional lender in 2003. My signed loan agreement was called a "Security Agreement, Note and D ...

Will a MARAD Waiver Allow Charters on a Foreign-Built Boat?

I recently purchased a foreign-built catamaran, and I intend use it in a small charter business. I have already obtained a “MARAD Waiver” ...

What Consequences Are There in Failing to Record a Bill of Sale?

I sold my boat almost a year ago. I signed and notarized a bill of sale on the official Coast Guard form and exchanged the bill of sale for a cashier& ...

Will My Insurance Policy Cover Damage to My Boat During Charters?

My boat is a part of a charter fleet managed by a company in the Pacific Northwest.  I take the boat out of service for personal use for a few we ...

USCG Documentation vs. DMV Registration: What Are the Differences?

When I bought my boat nearly 20 years ago, it was registered with the California Department of Motor Vehicles. The boat has a six-digit number engrave ...

Buying a Boat vs. Buying the LLC That Currently Owns It

I am a yacht broker representing both the buyer and seller in a transaction involving a boat that is titled into a Delaware limited liability corporat ...

Can My Marina Legally Charge Another Boater a Much Lower Slip Fee?

I keep my boat at a small marina on a lake in Arizona. It recently came to my attention that a fellow boat owner was paying $200 per month less than o ...

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