More than one million hectares of riparian forests were degraded or altered in Mato Grosso State (Brazil) up to 2009. The aim of the research is to set a comparative scenario to show differences in the quantification of environmental liabilities in riparian forest areas resulting from the change in native vegetation protection rules due to the transition between Laws 4771/65 and 12651/2012. Data collection took place in a marginal stretch of Vermelho River in Rondonópolis County, Mato Grosso State. The following data set was taken into consideration: aerial images derived from unmanned aerial vehicle, Rapid Eye satellite images and orbital images hosted at Google Earth. The spatial resolution of those images was compared. The aerial photos composed a mosaic that was photo-interpreted to generate land use and occupation classes. The riparian forest areas of a rural property were used as parameter, and their environmental situation was compared in 05 meter and 100 meter strips. Thus, by taking into consideration the current rules, 23,501 m2 of area ceased to be an environmental liability within the riparian forest and became a consolidated rural area. According to the previous Forest Code, in a different scenario, that is, in a set of rural properties, the public authority would receive USD 68,600.00 in fines. The new Brazilian Forestry Code of 2012, which replaces the previous one made in 1965, exempts those responsible for rural property from regenerating previously deforested native vegetation - an obligation established by older Forest Code. We have shown that the new Forest Code has diminished the legal responsibility of the rural owners in relation to the maintenance of forest fragments in their properties.