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post #9 of Old 04-30-2019
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Re: First Timers Looking for a Short Trip..

"BTW reasonable cost sharing is allowed before its called a charter."
The USCG issued their clarification on that around 1990. If the folks have a pre-existing relationship, and the payment is *entirely* voluntary, it is not a charter. If the folks don't know you form clear statement but "charter" will be considered. Similarly, if you each toss 1000$ in a "cruising kitty car" and pull form it as the trip goes on, that's not clarified. A conservative captain, and friends who want to ensure there is no problem, will do what they always did: After the trip is over, they'll all VOLUNTARILY kick in to the kitty, fuel the boat, whatever they're going to do.
But it all has to be voluntary, all the way to the end, to keep it perfectly clear of the "charter" landmines. If you take the money from strangers up front...risky business in the US legal system.
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