Re: "Paying" friends wanting to go on the boat.
The law on this is a little unclear since the have been relatively few cases dealing with is since the USCG published a clarification a few years ago. However the simple answer is that if someone contributes a pro rata share towards the cost of the trip, it does not count as commercial operation. In other words, a guest can pay their share of the cost of fuel, provisions, slippage (if while on the trip you stay at a marina), ect. However the moment a dime more than this is handed to the skipper, it becomes a commercial undertaking , and you need a OUPV license, and commercial insurance.
Note that this should not be taken as legal advice, and there is no attorney client relationship formed by this response.
Last edited by Stumble; 10-15-2013 at 09:09 PM.