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The Turley & Mara Law Firm, APLC

Proving Fault In A Boating Collision Accident

San Diego Boating Accident Lawyer Straight Talk:

“When I seek out professional advice, I don’t want B.S. I want it straight up, with no double talk. I figure you do also. I always use plain English, with no sugarcoating, no B.S. lawyer talk, and no double talk-just old fashioned, unsweetened, unvarnished truth-just the way that I would want it.” -Bill Turley

Nothing is more important than your credibility with the judge. You must always tell the truth. Every case had good or bad facts. You need to be up front and honest with your lawyer about everything. Always tell the truth. Always, no matter what it is you might be worried about.

If a judge thinks you are not being honest, you will have your case dismissed. I have witnessed it many times in court due to one white lie.  You must always be honest and truthful about your injury.

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 Proving Fault In A Boating Collision Accident

Whenever there is a boating accident with serious injury or death their needs to be a legal analysis performed in order to determine who was at fault. Because, proving fault is the key to successfully prevailing in a boating accident lawsuit.

Rules Of The Road: How To Determine Who Was At Fault In A Boat Collision

"Rules of the Road," is a term used for regulations that govern the conduct of boats in relation to each other. In other words, in collision situations. The purpose of Rules of the Road is to prevent vessel collisions. Think of navigational rules as a set of rules, much like the "rules of the road" apply to car drivers.

There are two sets of navigation rules: inland and international. International navigation rules are standardized all over the world, allowing boats from different countries to follow the same rules when they meet. Inland navigational rules can vary from region to region. Nautical charts typically include a demarcation line which shows when the nav rules transition from inland to international, so that boaters can be aware of changing standards of navigation. In general, these demarcation lines follow the coastline and cross inlets and bays. On the seaward side of the demarcation lines, international rules apply.


Understanding navigational rules or COLREGS (Collision Regulations) and knowing which is the stand-on boat or which is the give-way boat, is essential to determining which boat was the cause of a collision which occur on the navigable waters of the United States.


There are various rules that apply to specific situations. Here are some examples:

Rule 5 Look out
Rule 6 Safe Speed
Rule 7 Risk of Collision
Rule 8 Action to Avoid Collision
Rule 9 Narrow Channels
Rule 14 Head-On Situation
Rule 15 Crossing Situation


State Navigational Rules & Federal Maritime Law

Many States, have navigational rules. For example, California Harbors and Navigation Code and Arizona Revised Statutes. However, like poker, the Federal Rules of the Road / Nav Rules trump the State rules. Some State navigational rules include no wake zones or local traffic patterns. A violation of a COLREG or State law may give rise to powerful maritime presumptions. These are known as the Pennsylvania Rule and Breach of Statute.


Reasonable Care Under the Circumstances

In a collision situation, the Rules of the Road or State navigational rules are the primary method for determining who was at fault for the collision. However, the law also allows for recovery based upon a violation of a duty of care. The law imposes duties upon vessel operators under different circumstances The standard here is whether the acts or omissions which caused the collision were reasonable under the circumstances. In order to prevail under general maritime law you must prove a duty, breach of duty, the breach of duty was a cause of your injuries and damages.


Priority One: You

One of our bedrock principals is the making you, the client, our number one priority. We know that when the client comes first, we will continue to be a successful law firm. Bill Turley was elected President of Consumer Attorneys of San Diego.

We Believe In Our Work

We believe in what we do. We protect Maritime claimants, and consumers. We believe our job is to fight hard for you. Our job is to fight hard to help you get past your injuries. Our job is to fight hard to help you and your family maximize your compensation for your injuries.


Maritime Attorneys The Community Trusts

The Turley Law Firm Maritime attorneys are well known through-out San Diego and California. Our attorneys are recognized as preeminent lawyers.


A Personal Approach To Winning Your Case

Our lawyers and staff offer a personal approach to winning your case. We know what a serious injury or death can mean to you and your family. As a client, we want to know how your accident has affected your life. We will discuss all aspects of your case with you, advise you of your options and involve you in the decision making process. Helping you through this difficult time is our commitment. We are always available to answer your questions and will always keep you informed. We will do everything to ensure that you receive the highest compensation for your injuries.

William Turley
“When I seek out professional advice, I don’t want B.S., I want it straight up. I figure you do also.”

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