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State Boating Laws & Boating License Requirements

Passing a boating safety course will normally give you a discount on boat insurance and will increase your water safety skills. Boat safety courses are an excellent investment of time and money, regardless of your state's boating law. Each state has unique boating education requirements, and the boating rules, laws and regulations vary from state to state for obtaining a boat license or safety certification. Be sure to review the full legal requirements for your particular state.

States with mandatory boating law require safety certification for some or all boaters. Only one state (Alabama) requires an actual boat license. However, many prospective students are not aware of state legal terminology, and search for information about a boat license or licence, or a captain or captains license. This page is an excellent resource for boating law for all fifty states.

Alabama | Alaska | Arizona | Arkansas | California | Colorado  Connecticut | Delaware | Florida | Georgia | Hawaii | Idaho | Illinois  Indiana | Iowa | Kansas | Kentucky | Louisiana | Maine | Maryland  Massachusetts | Michigan | Minnesota | Mississippi | Missouri  Montana | Nebraska | Nevada | New Hampshire | New Jersey | New Mexico | New York | North Carolina | North Dakota | Ohio | Oklahoma  Oregon | Pennsylvania | Rhode Island | South Carolina | South Dakota Tennessee | Texas | Utah | Vermont | Virginia | Washington | West Virginia | Wisconsin | Wyoming | Puerto Rico | Virgin Islands

Alabama
http://www.dcnr.state.al.us
Yes, state has mandatory boating education law requiring that some operators of boats and/or personal watercraft obtain a boating license. See the state's website for specific boat license and boat safety course requirements. Also, read Alabama: The Legal Requirements of Boating in PDF format.

Alaska
http://www.alaskaboatingsafety.org
No mandatory boat or water safety course educational requirements.

Arizona
http://www.azgfd.com
No mandatory boating safety course educational requirements. Read Arizona: The Legal Requirements of Boating in PDF format.

Arkansas
http://www.agfc.state.ar.us
Yes, state has mandatory boating safety education law that applies to some operators of boats and/or personal watercraft. See the state's website for specific boater safety course regulation. Also, read Arkansas: The Legal Requirements of Boating in PDF format.

California
http://www.dbw.ca.gov
No mandatory boating safety course educational requirements. Read California: The Legal Requirements of Boating in PDF format.

Colorado
http://parks.state.co.us/boating
Yes, state has mandatory boating education law that applies to some operators of boats and/or personal watercraft. See the state's website for specific boating regulation and safety class regulation. Also, read Colorado: The Legal Requirements of Boating in PDF format.

Connecticut
http://dep.state.ct.us
Yes, state has mandatory boater education law that applies to some operators of boats and/or personal watercraft. See the state's website for specific safe boating course requirements. Also, read Connecticut: The Legal Requirements of Boating in PDF format.

Delaware
http://www.dnrec.state.de.us/dnrec2000
Yes, state has mandatory boat education law that applies to some operators of boats and/or personal watercraft. See the state's website for specific boat safety course requirements. Also, read Delaware: The Legal Requirements of Boating in PDF format.

Florida
http://www.myfwc.com
Yes, state has mandatory boating education law that applies to some operators of boats and/or personal watercraft. See the state's website for specific boating safety class regulation. Also, read Florida: The Legal Requirements of Boating in PDF format.

Georgia
http://www.gadnr.org
Yes, state has mandatory boater education law that applies to some operators of boats and/or personal watercraft. See the state's website for specific boating course requirements. Also, read Georgia: The Legal Requirements of Boating in PDF format.

Hawaii
http://www.state.hi.us/dlnr/dbor/dbor.htm
No mandatory boat or water safety course educational requirements.

Idaho
http://www.idahoparks.org
No mandatory boater safety class educational requirements. However, state has boating law that applies to some operators of boats and/or personal watercraft. See the state's website for specific information. Also, read Idaho: The Legal Requirements of Boating in PDF format.

Illinois
http://dnr.state.il.us
Yes, state has mandatory boat education law that applies to some operators of boats and/or personal watercraft. See the state's website for specific boater safety course regulation. Also, read Illinois: The Legal Requirements of Boating in PDF format.

Indiana
http://www.state.in.us/dnr
Yes, state has mandatory boating education law that applies to some operators of boats and/or personal watercraft. See the state's website for specific boat safety class requirements. Also, read Indiana: The Legal Requirements of Boating in PDF format.

Iowa
http://www.iowadnr.com
Yes, state has mandatory boater education law that applies to some operators of boats and/or personal watercraft. See the state's website for specific boat safety course regulation. Also, read Iowa: The Legal Requirements of Boating in PDF format.

Kansas
http://www.kdwp.state.ks.us
Yes, state has mandatory boat education law that applies to some operators of boats and/or personal watercraft. See the state's website for specific boater safety course requirements. Also, read Kansas: The Legal Requirements of Boating in PDF format.

Kentucky
http://www.kdfwr.state.ky.us
Yes, state has mandatory boating education law that applies to some operators of boats and/or personal watercraft. See the state's website for specific boat safety course regulation. Also, read Kentucky: The Legal Requirements of Boating in PDF format.

Louisiana
http://www.wlf.state.la.us
Yes, state has mandatory boater education law that applies to some operators of boats and/or personal watercraft. See the state's website for specific boating safety course requirements. Also, read Louisiana: The Legal Requirements of Boating in PDF format.

Maine
Maine (Inland) http://www.mefishwildlife.com
Maine (Marine) http://www.maine.gov/dmr
No mandatory boating or water safety course educational requirements.

Maryland
http://www.dnr.state.md.us
Yes, state has mandatory boat education law that applies to some operators of boats and/or personal watercraft. See the state's website for specific boater safety course regulation. Also, read Maryland: The Legal Requirements of Boating in PDF format.

Massachusetts
http://www.mass.gov/dfwele/dle
Yes, state has mandatory boating education law that applies to some operators of boats and/or personal watercraft. See the state's website for specific boat safety class requirements. Also, read Massachusetts: The Legal Requirements of Boating in PDF format.

Michigan
http://www.michigan.gov/dnr
Yes, state has mandatory boater education law that applies to some operators of boats and/or personal watercraft. See the state's website for specific boating safety course requirements. Also, read Michigan: The Legal Requirements of Boating in PDF format.

Minnesota
http://www.dnr.state.mn.us
Yes, state has mandatory boat education law that applies to some operators of boats and/or personal watercraft. See the state's website for specific boater safety course regulation. Also, read Minnesota: The Legal Requirements of Boating in PDF format.

Mississippi
http://www.mdwfp.com
Yes, state has mandatory boating education law that applies to some operators of boats and/or personal watercraft. See the state's website for specific boat safety class requirements. Also, read Mississippi: The Legal Requirements of Boating in PDF format.

Missouri
http://www.mswp.dps.mo.gov
Yes, state has mandatory boater education law that applies to some operators of boats and/or personal watercraft. See the state's website for specific boating safety course regulation. Also, read Missouri: The Legal Requirements of Boating in PDF format.

Montana
http://www.fwp.state.mt.us
Yes, state has mandatory boat education law that applies to some operators of boats and/or personal watercraft. See the state's website for specific boater safety course requirements.

Nebraska
http://www.ngpc.state.ne.us/boating
Yes, state has mandatory boating education law that applies to some operators of boats and/or personal watercraft. See the state's website for specific boater safety course requirements. Also, read Nebraska: The Legal Requirements of Boating in PDF format.

Nevada
http://www.ndow.org
Yes, state has mandatory boater education law that applies to some operators of boats and/or personal watercraft. See the state's website for specific boating safety class regulation. Also, read Nevada: The Legal Requirements of Boating in PDF format.

New Hampshire
http://www.state.nh.us
Yes, state has mandatory boat education law that applies to some operators of boats and/or personal watercraft. See the state's website for specific boater safety course requirements. Also, read New Hampshire: The Legal Requirements of Boating in PDF format.

New Jersey
http://www.state.nj.us
Yes, state has mandatory boating education law that applies to some operators of boats and/or personal watercraft. See the state's website for specific boat safety course regulation. Also, read New Jersey: The Legal Requirements of Boating in PDF format.

New Mexico
http://www.emnrd.state.nm.us/nmparks
No mandatory boating safety educational requirements.

New York
http://www.nysparks.com/boats
Yes, state has mandatory boater education law that applies to some operators of boats and/or personal watercraft. See the state's website for specific boating safety course requirements. Also, read New York: The Legal Requirements of Boating in PDF format.

North Carolina
http://www.ncwildlife.org
Yes, state has mandatory boat education law that applies to some operators of boats and/or personal watercraft. See the state's website for specific boater safety course requirements. Also, read North Carolina: The Legal Requirements of Boating in PDF format.

North Dakota
http://www.state.nd.us/gnf
No mandatory boating safety course educational requirements.

Ohio
http://www.dnr.state.oh.us/watercraft
Yes, state has mandatory boating education law that applies to some operators of boats and/or personal watercraft. See the state's website for specific boat safety course regulation. Also, read Ohio: The Legal Requirements of Boating in PDF format.

Oklahoma
http://www.dps.state.ok.us/ohp/aboutlp.htm
Yes, state has mandatory boater education law that applies to some operators of boats and/or personal watercraft. See the state's website for specific boating safety course requirements. Also, read Oklahoma: The Legal Requirements of Boating in PDF format.

Oregon
http://www.boatoregon.com
Yes, state has mandatory boat education law that applies to some operators of boats and/or personal watercraft. See the state's website for specific boater safety course requirements. Also, read Oregon: The Legal Requirements of Boating in PDF format.

Pennsylvania
http://www.fish.state.pa.us
Yes, state has mandatory boating education law that applies to some operators of boats and/or personal watercraft. See the state's website for specific boat safety class regulation. Also, read Pennsylvania: The Legal Requirements of Boating in PDF format.

Rhode Island
http://www.state.ri.us/dem
Yes, state has mandatory boater education law that applies to some operators of boats and/or personal watercraft. See the state's website for specific boating safety course requirements. Also, read Rhode Island: The Legal Requirements of Boating in PDF format.

South Carolina
http://www.dnr.state.sc.us
Yes, state has mandatory boat education law that applies to some operators of boats and/or personal watercraft. See the state's website for specific boating safety course requirements. Also, read South Carolina: The Legal Requirements of Boating in PDF format.

South Dakota
http://www.sdgfp.info/Index.htm
No mandatory boating safety class educational requirements.

Tennessee
http://www.state.tn.us/twra
Yes, state has mandatory boating education law that applies to some operators of boats and/or personal watercraft. See the state's website for specific boat safety course regulation. Also, read Tennessee: The Legal Requirements of Boating in PDF format.

Texas
http://www.tpwd.state.tx.us
Yes, state has mandatory boater education law that applies to some operators of boats and/or personal watercraft. See the state's website for specific boating safety course requirements. Also, read Texas: The Legal Requirements of Boating in PDF format.

Utah
http://www.stateparks.utah.gov
Yes, state has mandatory boat education law that applies to some operators of boats and/or personal watercraft. See the state's website for specific boater safety course requirements. Also, read Utah: The Legal Requirements of Boating in PDF format.

Vermont
http://www.dps.state.vt.us
Yes, state has mandatory boating education law that applies to some operators of boats and/or personal watercraft. See the state's website for specific boating safety course regulation. Also, read Vermont: The Legal Requirements of Boating in PDF format.

Virginia
http://www.dgif.state.va.us
Yes, state has mandatory boater education law that applies to some operators of boats and/or personal watercraft. See the state's website for specific safe boating course requirements. Also, read Virginia: The Legal Requirements of Boating in PDF format.

Washington
http://www.parks.wa.gov
No mandatory boater safety class educational requirements. However, state has boating law that applies to some operators of boats and/or personal watercraft. See the state's website for specific information. Also, read Washington: The Legal Requirements of Boating in PDF format.

West Virginia
http://www.wvdnr.gov
Yes, state has mandatory boat education law that applies to some operators of boats and/or personal watercraft. See the state's website for specific safe boater class regulation.

Wisconsin
http://www.dnr.state.wi.us/org/es/enforcement/safety/boatsaf.htm
Yes, state has mandatory boating education law that applies to some operators of boats and/or personal watercraft. See the state's website for specific boater safety course requirements. Also, read Wisconsin: The Legal Requirements of Boating in PDF format.

Wyoming
http://gf.state.wy.us
No mandatory boating safety course educational requirements.

Puerto Rico
No mandatory boating safety course educational requirements.

Virgin Islands
No mandatory boating safety course educational requirements. Read Virgin Islands: The Legal Requirements of Boating in PDF format.

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INCLUDES CD-ROM

  & 80 PAGE MANUAL

 
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Enroll now!

 

INCLUDES CD-ROM

  & 80 PAGE MANUAL

 

Sponsors of America's Boating Course - America's Boating Course is a joint project between the United States Coast Guard Auxiliary and the United States Power Squadrons. In addition, the course has been approved by the National Association of State Boating Law Administrators, and is accepted by most states to meet boating license or safety certification requirements.