Who is Responsible for a Boating Accident in California?

Finding The Liable Parties For Your California Boat Accident Claims


The California coastline is vast. That's why it draws a lot of people, from marine and maritime workers, casual tourists, and savvy boat owners. Unfortunately, this also means California has also seen a lot of boating accidents throughout the years. A recent report shows that an increased interest in boating has also led to more accidents and death. In 2020, there was a 25% increase in boating fatalities compared to 2019.


Even if there are no fatalities, there are still high risks for physical injuries, emotional distress, and property damage associated with boating accidents. All of these pose economic and non-economic damages to the victim.


However, if another party caused your accident, they are legally liable to pay for your injuries and losses. After all, if it hadn't been for their negligence, you wouldn't be experiencing the losses you sustained in a boating accident in California.

That said, you can't blame just anyone to get compensation. You need to present evidence and a solid case that proves a specific party is indeed legally liable to pay for your damages. Hence, here's a quick guide on how boating accident lawyers in Los Angeles identify liable parties for a boating accident lawsuit in California.


boating accident lawyers in Los Angeles

Common Causes Of Boating Accidents In California


You can get injured on a boat in several different ways. This could include the following:

  • Collisions. Boats, like automobiles on the road, can collide with one another. Speed, conditions, and events leading up to the accident all raise the chance and severity of an accident. Boating accidents frequently result in serious injuries, and some even result in death.

  • Courts have the authority to apportion fault based on the facts of the case. Boating collisions are usually caused by speed, driving under the influence, and distracted boating.

  • Wakes of Speed Boats. High-speed boats leave 'wakes' behind them as they travel over the water's surface. Wakes contain a lot of energy and volume; colliding with them can cause a boat to turn, capsize, or crash.

  • However, if the other boat operator is driving carelessly or quickly through a no-wake zone, they may be accountable for your injuries.

  • Failure to keep and maintain proper safety equipment onboard. If a boat operator or driver fails to have safety equipment on board, they may be held accountable for a boating accident harm.

  • Some essential tools you need to keep on your boat include jackets, life preservers, flare guns, first aid kits, fire extinguishers, whistles, horns, etc.

In most cases, boating accident lawyers in Los Angeles start by looking at the leading cause of the accident. However, some common boating accidents might have different causes and perceived liable parties.


This is the best way to identify whether the fault of the accident is yours or someone else's. Then, your boating accident attorney in Los Angeles will be able to help you find the proper evidence, file the correct paperwork, and build a solid case that defends your interests.


boating accident lawsuit california

How Do You Define Fault In California Boat Accident Claims?


According to California personal injury laws, a party is liable for your injuries if they've been in some ways negligent. Although the accident is unintentional, negligent behavior is enough for someone to be in some ways legally liable to compensate an injured party.


Your boating accident attorney in Los Angeles will identify the responsible party according to the following requirements:

  • The defendant had a "duty of care". For example, boat owners have to get a license, follow maritime rules, and keep their passengers safe. Likewise, shipping and fishing companies need to keep their employees well-trained and safe from accidents.