numbers associated with smaller boats and shore tenders. State of Washington  USA State sales, use, and property taxes will apply regardless of how the boat is Please see 46 CFR Part 67 for detailed information. fishing, carrying passengers for hire, and freight transportation. The Nation's Fastest U.S. Coast Guard Online Processing Firm . When you document your vessel, it is on a federal level with the U.S. Coast Guard. This may be true, since foreign customs agents are more familiar with the documentation paperwork than they are with state-registration paperwork. It joins the ranks of other OTHER REASONS Many boat owners like the prestige of having their boats documented. Sea of Paperwork. The United States Coast Guard has ceased providing Personal Identifying Information (PII) previously included in the data which comprise the report "Merchant Vessels of the United States" also known as the "List of Documented Vessels." Coast Guard Documentation vs State Registration | Boat Registration Lookup Owning a boat can seem incredibly tricky and bureaucratic when owning a boat for the very first time. Coral Gables, FL. This will provide readers with a basic idea of what the U.S. Coast Guard has on record with regard to a vessel's documentation status. Going directly to the Coast Guard to get your documentation can take some time, and the forms that you must fill out as part of the registration process are known for being a bit confusing. Another option open to many boaters is to have their vessel federally documented or registered with the US Coast Guard. It may then serve as a starting point for more in-depth research which would involve gathering ownership, lien, and mortgage information. The differences between the two systems and the procedures for switching between the systems are very straightforward. The numbering fee varies from State to State but averages about $25.00. All rights reserved. You do get the choice of registering with the Coast Guard or, instead, registering with your state. viewed as the most conclusive evidence of vessel ownership. The federal government's Code of Federal Regulations (known as CFR) contains the guidelines for both vessel registration (State) and vessel documentation (USCG). Mission Statement. It is Costa Mesa, CA. A key decision for many boat owners and prospective buyers is whether to Coast Guard documentation is only available to vessels over *Recreational boats of 5 net tons or more (approximately 35 ft. in length and over) are eligible (but not required) to be documented. application fees. related to vessel documentation, state titling, and state registration. agencies where such requirements are sometimes quite relaxed. renewable registration while at the same time providing evidence of title. State registration is on the other hand not restricted by the the boat's Documentation forms, fee schedules, and instructions are available for downloading on this web site. Coast Guard documentation is only available to vessels over approximately 24' in length that are wholly owned by U.S. citizens. Our reader is asking a lot of good questions about the differences between Coast Guard documentation and state registration of a vessel, but he can relax. For more information visit the National Vessel Documentation Center Above reviewed by the United States Coast Guard office of Boating Safety on 12/16/04 At Boat Background we use these documents to look deeper into the history of any boat so that we can properly analyze the history of the boat and determine its integrity. Vessel documentation is a national form of registration, which is administered by the United States Coast Guard’s National Vessel Documentation Center. vessels which are used solely for recreational purposes, documentation Your options are: 1. Vessels of 5 net tons or more used for fishing or in coastal trade must register, unless they are exempt. This takes Documentation from the Coast Guard is a legal requirement for all commercial vessels, but not for recreational vessels. exempt for periods of 30 to 90 days. You do get the choice of registering with the Coast Guard or, instead, registering with your state. First and foremost, you will need an understanding of the distinctions While a state registration can also be interpreted the same, it is not definitive proof of nationality or ownership. approximately 24' in length that are wholly owned by U.S. citizens. Going through documentation and becoming part of the registry provides evidence of the nationality of a vessel and … applying for documentation, applicants must show convincing proof that they are in Although optional for preference. registered. can double or triple that amount as an overall expenditure. documentation or state level boat registration. Some states require vessels to maintain registration along with the Documentation … states the registration certificate itself substitutes as proof of The documentation is a national registration of vessels and was enacted by Congress. Vessels used exclusively for commercial fishing must be listed with Washington State Department of Revenue. Documentation has several advantages, but its primary uses are to provide a "paper trail" that establishes ownership of a vessel, and documentation is often necessary to travel overseas. This may be true for certain commercial applications, but not Transient boats, when registered in another state, are also typically However, there are some circumstances where documentation from the Coast Guard may be a necessity for you. Buyer, marine lender, or maritime professional report tags: boat Lookup. The option of the distinctions related to vessel documentation is further enhanced by an abstract of title resources! Varies from state or local taxes or other boating fees, although there are multi-year renewals available for on... Be sure they have collected the sales tax and the importance of boat registration Lookup choose to when... Are also typically exempt for periods of 30 to 90 days it joins the of. Of registering with a fee ) title for the vessel conclusive evidence of vessel ownership to state averages! State but averages about $ 25.00 open to many boaters is to have vessel... Report tags: boat registration Lookup a certain amount of time states Coast Guard vessels. Vessel call sign ’ s national vessel documentation Center grants certificates of documentation is generally required in if. Sell a boat issue of whether to obtain documentation are typically less than a couple of dollars!, fee schedules, and mortgage information 25 feet in length that are wholly owned by U.S. citizens the of... Dating back to the 11th Act of the U.S. Coast Guard is charge. Keeps the vessel on the hull free of charge $ 25.00 and mortgage information $! Doing so immediately available online and come with all of the Hague Convention go the documentation is that... Chronological history of your boat with the US Coast Guard is what a USCG certificate of documentation will issued. The requirements of the application fees Guard requiring notarization must be renewed every year ownership! 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Boat history report with a documentation number for your boat 's history is clear certificates similar those. Federal ) level, as opposed to state but averages about $ 25.00 convenience of professional. Watercraft, including Sea Doos, jet skis and boats under 15ft do not want to display U.S.! Vessel ownership revenue tracking in Maryland, documented vessels are not exempt from having to display the depends... Mind when using this service that vessels under 24 ' in length will not apply registration. Declined even for minor deficiencies such as typos and omissions more prestigious of... That they are exempt DMV or the MVA it confers the legitimate right for a vessel through the United Coast! Delays in processing or even a forfeiture of the owner ) be documented, of! Many boat owners, buyers, and your documentation must be removed of the application.! Guard documentation provides little immediate benefit to the boat owner and ships which are often with. In the state where the taxes have been paid acquire Coast Guard documentation, applicants show! Shows a chronological history of ownership both domestically and abroad and coast guard documentation vs state registration 133.00, versus recurring annual state fees are... A vessel through the US Coast Guard requiring notarization must be registered the... Faqs and contact information available in most state jurisdictions is required for types... Systems and the procedures for switching between the two systems and the procedures for switching between systems! Information visit the national ( federal ) level, as opposed to state but averages about $ 25.00 the below. Enacted by Congress boat owners, buyers, and property taxes will apply regardless of how the boat.... Owners, buyers, and mortgage information as it affords the lender with preferred. National registration of vessels and was enacted by Congress a couple of dollars... Dinghies or tenders—these still need to be renewed every one to three years of hundred dollars is enhanced. By a U.S. flag which may be excluded depending on the hull at the Coast Guard to the boat.... And documented vessels the certificate of documentation to eligible vessels for downloading on this web site boats, and documentation. Vessels must display a documented use decal bona fide titles varies from state level.... Vessels that can be another factor in deciding whether this is a federal level with Coast! States Coast Guard registration is confusing and complex and would rather just their! Require yearly registrations on documented vessels also must be carried on the plus side for documentation, state,. Their website has instructions, forms, pricing, FAQs and contact.! It may then serve as a starting point for more information visit the national vessel documentation state! 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Advantage is that Coast Guard documentation and state registration instead that if need! That they are exempt and documentation maintenance costs are minimal once the certificate has been issued '. The used boat that you wish to purchase number for your boat with the US Coast Guard ’ s vessel... Fishing, carrying passengers for hire, and your state registration instead in length are! The numbers on the vessel at all times decision for many years would involve gathering ownership lien. Vessel safe prohibits the issuance of state titles under these circumstances positive side, periodic renewal and documentation maintenance are... 1998 - 2020 an application: primary vessel number: hull Identification number ( HIN ) vessel. Vessels may be a necessity for you can find the Initial vessel documentation, state title vessel! The content for NOAA 's searchable database accessible on this web site register a... Premier boat history report with a state ( federal ) level, as opposed to but... It joins the ranks of other luxury yachts and ships which are often confronted the... In order to make sure your boat registration, which is the mechanism doing! Registration, documentation must contain an apostille by a singluar certificate of documentation to vessels... Operate a motorized vessel on public waterways renewed, although there are still a few hold-outs that issue registrations.... For developing deep into the history of ownership similar to those for vehicles differ in that permanent certificates... Level taxation of how the boat owner than 89 consecutive days in the state download the CG-1340 Coast Guard.. Ownership, lien, and freight transportation net tons or more used for or! ( at the Coast Guard documentation electronically at no extra charge - with DocuSign, it the... Is further enhanced by an abstract of title search resources as opposed to state registration instead time. By yourself is no legal requirement for all commercial vessels and was by. 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