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When the beginning of the new year rolls around, it often brings many new laws with it. For the state of New York, one new law includes some significant changes for boat owners. It is crucial for anyone who operates or even rides a boat to implement certain safety measures. This ensures that they keep themselves and others out of harm’s way while they are trying to have fun. While there are many other requirements for boat safety, “Brianna’s Law” is now in effect to take these safety measures another step further.

What is Brianna’s Law?

“Brianna’s Law” was named in honor of an 11 year old girl from Long Island who passed away as a result of a boating accident fifteen years ago. As of January 1, the state of New York now requires boaters who operate watercraft with engines to not only take a boater safety course, but pass it as well. The course that must be taken is eight hours long and can be taken in either four two hour sessions, or two four hour sessions. 

Two boating safety instructors from the Onondaga Yacht Club believe the course could make a difference between life and death. Instructor Jeffrey Friedman stated, “Without fail, every single accident, whether it’s a grounding or fatality or a collision, all of this happened because they didn’t do something that was covered in our boating safety course.” 

Those operating a boat this upcoming summer who fail to take the course and obtain a safety certificate can be fined up to $200.

Recovering Compensation After a Boating Accident

When a person becomes injured in a boating accident due to the negligence of the boat operator, it is important to know that they can pursue legal action to hold the negligent party responsible. This can be done through a personal injury lawsuit in which the injured party must prove negligence. In order to do so, the individual must satisfy the burden of proof with evidence that shows the injuries were a direct result of the boat owner’s behavior. Evidence that can be useful in court can include pictures of videos of the scene of the accident, medical documentation of the victim’s injuries, any witnesses to the accident, and more. 

Contact our Firm

If you have been injured in a New York City car accident, Swerling Law is here to help. Our firm understands the challenges that many people face after being hurt in an accident and is prepared to help you receive an award of significant compensation to ease some of your burdens. To schedule a consultation with an experienced construction site accident attorney in New York City, contact Swerling Law today.


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Settlement to a barista who slipped and fell on a defective stairwell while working for Starbucks who sustained back injuries requiring multiple surgeries in 2012.


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Verdict to a high school student who was assaulted by a school dean during her lunch period dislocating her hip in 2014.

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