Boating Rules and Regulations


This page provides clickable links to information concerning boating rules and regulations in the state of Georgia.

General Boating Information

Attention Paddlers!

GRN Logo
One of our SPLASH Water Safety partners, the Georgia River Network, has a great free app with lots of valuable information on safety and for navigating Georgia's rivers so you can make the most of your paddling adventure! To get more information on the app and to download it, visit today!


Boating Handbook

Boating Laws

All boating laws are under O.C.G.A. Title 52, Chapter 7.  


Marine Event Permit

Applications for marine events must be received by the Boating Law Administrator at least 30 days prior to the event.  
Marine events with more than 10,000 participants and spectators must be received at least 90 days prior to the event.
The Event Coordinator must apply for the Marine Event Permit and submit to the Georgia DNR Region Law Enforcement Office in their area.

Click here for more information on Marine Event Permits.

Abandoned Vessels

Marinas, Repair Facilities, Tow Companies, and Storage Facilities

The forms provided in this package should be helpful in making such requests as prescribed by law, however, each case is unique and these forms might not be sufficient for your particular situation.  It is absolutely necessary that the lien claimant obtain sufficient responses from the state agencies as prescribed by law prior to filing a petition to foreclose.

The entity removing or storing an abandoned vessel, who does not provide the notice and information required by law, shall not be entitled to any storage fees.  In addition, any person who knowingly provides false or misleading information as required by law, shall be guilty of a misdemeanor.

Click here for more information on Abandoned Vessels

Private Individuals

Georgia law does not allow for a private individual to recover an abandoned vessel for personal ownership regardless of where and how the vessel was abandoned.

O.C.G.A. 52-7-72 provides that a peace officer can have a vessel removed from public waters or other public property when a vessel poses a threat to public health or safety or has been left for 5 days if such peace officer reasonably believes that the person who left the vessel unattended does not intend to return or remove the vessel.

For further information, contact your Law Enforcement Division region office at: Click here for region office contact information

Coastal Long-Term & Short-Term Anchoring

Georgia is home to more than 105 miles of coastal shoreline with outstanding opportunities for boating. In order to keep our coast healthy and vibrant, the Georgia Department of Natural Resources has established regulations for overnight and long-term anchoring.

Click here for information on the Georgia Estuarine (Marine) Anchoring Law

Wakeboarding and Wakesurfing Law

In 2023, the Georgia General Assembly passed House Bill 121, bringing about changes in the regulations governing wakeboarding and wakesurfing activities on state waters.

Click here for information on the new Wakeboarding and Wakesurfing Law

Click here for a printable flyer on the new Wakeboarding and Wakesurfing Law

Click here to read House Bill 121 (Part 1)