Wednesday, May 8, 2024

How To Look Up Boat Registration

How To Get A Motorboat Or Jet Ski License

How to Apply Boat Registration Numbers Like a Pro

The Motor Vehicle Commission issues motorboat and personal watercraft licenses for use on fresh, non-tidal waters or lakes, creeks or rivers not affected by tidal conditions. A boat license and New Jersey Boat Safety Certificate are required to operate a power vessel or personal watercraft – jet ski or wave runner – on non-tidal waters of New Jersey. A boat license is not required for non-powered vessels.

Step One: Complete a boating safety course For any power motorboat operation on tidal waters, you must successfully complete a boating safety course approved by the New Jersey State Police to receive a New Jersey Boating Safety Course Certificate. Visit the NJSP Marine Service Bureau website for full details.

Additional information is available:

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Step Two: Get an initial motorboat or jet ski license You must be at least 16 years old. If you are under the age of 17, you need to present a letter with parental or guardian consent.

Applicants must visit a motor vehicle agency with:

New Jersey Boating Safety Course Certificate Pay the $18 license fee

The MVC accepts American Express® card, MasterCard®, Visa® card, Discover card®, checks, money orders and cash.

A license may be renewed by following the above steps for getting the initial license.

How to title and register a boat

In order to use New Jersey waterways, all boats must be titled and registered except:

How to title and register a homemade boat

Wisconsin Registration And Titling Documents

Upon receipt of boat registration and titling application, required fees, and information related to sales tax paid, the department will issue:

  • A certificate of registration. The Registration Certificate, also commonly referred to as the certificate of number card or registration card, is a small pocket-sized card made of durable water-resistant material and must be carried by the person operating the boat and available for inspection.
  • Two expiration decals. The registration expiration decals are commonly also referred to as registration certification decals. Wisconsin DNR Registration Decals are color coded to match the expiration year of the registration. The decals must be attached to the boat prior to operation, see What you should know before you operate your boat for more information.
  • Wisconsin Certificate of title. The Certificate of Title is the legal document indicating boat ownership and is a full 8 ½ X 11-inch sized sheet of paper. The certificate of title is required to transfer ownership.

Al Boat Registration Exemptions

The Alabama Marine Patrol Division does not require boat registration for a vessel:

  • With valid temporary certificates of number.
  • Currently registered in another state, as long as the vessel won’t be in AL for more than 90 consecutive days.
  • Registered in another country, temporarily operating in Alabama.
  • Owned by a government entity .
  • That is a ship’s lifeboat.
  • Not propelled by machinery .
  • Documented as commercialwith the U.S. Coast Guard.
  • Boats documented for pleasure will need to be registered.

Additionally, Alabama does not require you to register boat trailers.

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A Search Gives You Valuable Data

Performing a registration search can provide you with valuable information about the boat you like so much. You can search the Coast Guards database so you can find out if the boat has ever been documented with the Coast Guard and if that documentation is current. You can also learn information such as when the boat was built, the size and tonnage of the ship, where the owner is located, and more essential information. All the data that you discover can be useful to you in deciding if this is the recreational vessel that you really want to buy or not. You may find out that the boat is not as big as you thought or is older than you would like or is made from materials that you do not want.

What Must Be Registered

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All vessels powered by any mechanical device capable of propelling the vessel over any public or private waters of Nebraska must be registered, except the following:

  • Motorboats registered in another state and housed in Nebraska less than 60 consecutive days
  • Vessels owned by any government or political subdivision
  • Racing-type motorboats when competing in state-approved races and during trial runs
  • Vessels documented by U.S. Coast Guard

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Florida Vin And Vessel Records

If you need to find information about a vehicle’s history, start by checking government records kept by the Florida Department of Highway Safety and Motor Vehicles .

Using the license plate number or Vehicle Identification Number , you can access details about ownership history and find out if the vehicle has a lien on it. Visit to request an official vehicle status report.

You can also enter a vehicle’s license plate number on the website to determine if the tag is registered to a different vehicle. The report lists the VIN, year, make and model of the vehicle associated with the plate number.

If you need to review documentation on a boat or another vessel, you can search for records by entering the vessel’s name or official U.S. Coast Guard identification number on the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration website.

The vessel documentation you will receive lists a wide range of identifying information, including the vessel’s current name, previous names, home port, owner, hull number and more.

How To Find Out Who Is On A Title For A Boat

If you need to find out who is on the title for a boat, you will need to gather certain identifying information from the vessel. In instances where you have been in a boating accident and the other boater sped away, you may be able to identify the boat by its name and port of hail. Keep in mind that many jurisdictions do not disclose title information about boat owners in order to protect people’s privacy, but if you have an accident report or a pending lawsuit where the information is privy to discovery, you may be entitled to the information.

Step 1

Check the boat’s registration. Look on either side of the bow for a registration sticker. This will tell you if the boat is documented with the Coast Guard or if it is registered with the state. The sticker is usually a small square or rectangle.

Step 2

Write down the boat’s identifying information. Write down any information on the boat’s registration sticker. Find the hull identification number . The HIN is required of all boats since the 1970s and is a unique identifier for each watercraft in the US, including jet skis or other small craft. The HIN is usually located on the stern or back of the boat on the starboard or right side of the boat when it is facing forward. Write down the name and port of hail of the boat. This is usually located on the stern, too.

Step 3


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How To Find The Owner Of A Boat

There are many reasons you might want to know who owns a boat.

Maybe you found a boat adrift, maybe you would like to speak with a current owner of a boat that you are considering, or maybe a boat has been damaged and you need to speak to the owner. ;

Whatever the reason, finding the owner of a boat is fairly straight forward if you use some common sense and know a few identifying features.

In this article, we will look at a few ways of finding a boats owner and point you in the right direction:

Boat Vessel And Outboard Motor Title Penalties

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Missouri Residents:

You have 60 days from the date of purchase to title your newly purchased boat, vessel, or outboard motor. If you do not title the boat, vessel, or outboard motor, there is a title penalty of $10 on the 61st day after purchase. The penalty increases another $10 for every 30 days you are late with a maximum penalty of $30.

Out-of-State Residents:

You have 60 days from bringing the boat, vessel, or outboard motor into Missouri to title the boat, vessel, or outboard motor if it is to be kept in Missouri over 60 consecutive days. If you do not title the boat, vessel, or outboard motor, there is a title penalty of $10 on the 61st day. The penalty increases another $10 for every 30 days you are late with a maximum penalty of $30.

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Boat Registration & License Fees

The fees associated with operating your boat are as follows:

  • Registration/renewal fee, which depends on the length of your boat :
  • Class I16 ft: $18.
  • Class II16 ft to 26 ft: $23.
  • Class III26 ft to 40 ft: $73.
  • Class IV40 ft and longer: $98.
  • Registration certificate replacement fee: $3.
  • Transfer fee for vessels:
  • With current AL registration: $3.
  • Without current registration: $3.
  • Class V boating license: $23.
  • Application fee: $5.
  • NOTE: There is an additional $2 issuance fee.

    New Registrations And Renewals

    Registration may be obtained only from the county treasurer in the boaters county of residence. Boat owners may renew registration with the Nebraska Department of Motor Vehicles or their county treasurers office.

    Vessels less than 16 feet in length and all canoes regardless of length $23.00*
    Vessels 16 feet or over but less than 26 feet in length $46.00*
    Vessels 26 feet or over but less than 40 feet in length $67.50*
    Vessels 40 feet in length and over $115.00*
    Dealers or manufacturers of motorboats for demonstration or testing purposes $46.00*
    To replace a lost or destroyed certificate $5.00*

    * An additional $4 issuing fee is applied to all registrations listed above. Registration applications submitted after the beginning of any registration period for a motorboat not previously registered in Nebraska by the applicant will be reduced by 1/36 for each full month passed.

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    Al Boat Registration Procedure

    After purchasing a vessel, you must register a:

    • New boat within 72 hours of the purchase date.
    • Used boat:

    Keep the registration certificate on board your vessel, and put the current year decal on an easily noticeable spot of the bow.

    NOTE: If you have a receipt showing you paid your sales and use tax, you may also register at the Marine Police Division office in Montgomery. If you’re a dealer, you must register at the Marine Police Division office.

    Exemptions: Boats That Don’t Need To Display Oh Numbers

    Registration Requirements: BoatUS Foundation
    • Manually-propelled vessels that use the Alternative Registration
    • Vessels documented by the US Coast Guard – Documented boats are very large boats that have their own federal numbering system. This is not a frequent case for recreational boaters in Ohio. If a documented vessel is owned and operated in Ohio, it must be registered in Ohio and must display one tag on the port side and one on the starboard side.
    • Boats numbered by another state and not used in this state for more than 60 days
    • Boats from a country other than the United States temporarily using Ohio water
    • Boats owned by the United States, a state, or a political subdivision
    • A ship’s lifeboat; A “lifeboat” is held aboard another vessel and used exclusively for emergency purposes.
    • Vessels exempted by the chief of the Division of Parks & Watercraft
    • Vessels under a waiver issued for a race or special event

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    Obtaining A Temporary Permit

    Upon purchase of a newly acquired boat, vessel, or outboard motor you may purchase a temporary permit to operate the boat, vessel, or outboard motor on Missouriâs waterways.

    • If the unit is not a documented vessel, a temporary permit will be issued for a period of up to 30 days, and must expire prior to the 60th day from the purchase date of the boat, vessel, or outboard motor. If the unit is a documented vessel, a temporary permit will be issued for a period of up to 60 days from the temporary permit issuance date.
    • The applicant may be a Missouri or out-of-state resident.
    • Temporary permits are non-renewable.
    • Temporary permits may not be purchased once application for title and registration has been made.
    • Temporary permits may NOT be purchased for a salvage boat, vessel, or outboard motor.

    To obtain a temporary permit, please bring the following items with you to any Missouri license office:

  • One of the following ownership documents:
    • Temporary Watercraft Certificate of Number – $11.00
    • Temporary Outboard Motor Registration Number – $8.00

    The temporary permit must be carried in the boat or vessel while the unit is in operation.

    Florida Boat Registration Numbers

    Florida boat registration numbers begin with a FL. The FL designation is followed by four numbers and then two letters like in most states. You will have to display these as shown above if your boat is non-documented at the USCG. Put the FL boat registration sticker tab next to it. The state reg. number should not be confused with the 12 character Hull ID .

    All boats manufactured after 1972 are required to have a 12 digit hull identification number affixed to the vessel by the manufacturer. State assigned hull numbers prefixed with the letters FLZ are available for home made boats and those without factory designations. Hull number inspections are not required in Florida unless there is a discrepancy.

    Exceptionally, a Coast Guard documented vessel does not need to display the state registration number but instead they would display the state registration tabs, an owner designated vessel name, and a hailing port. The USCG Official documentation number must also be affixed on other location on the boat: interior location in the hull itself or an integral part of the hull.

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    Boat Vessel And Documented Vessel Registration Renewal Requirements

    A boat, vessel, or documented vessel registration must be renewed every three years. The registration expires on June 30th in the year specified on the decal. There is no late renewal penalty.Outboard motor decals are not required to be renewed.

    To obtain information regarding your renewal, you may visit the Department’s Renewal Requirements Inquiry system.

    To renew a boat, vessel, or documented vessel registration, the owner must submit the following;

  • A boat, vessel, or documented vessel registration renewal notice. If you did not receive this notice in the mail, you may use the Application for Watercraft/Outboard Motor Registration and Replacement Decal ;
  • A Paid personal property tax receipt listing the boat or vessel from the County Collector or Assessor for the previous year.
  • If the boat or vessel is not listed on the tax receipt , the following must be submitted:
  • A corrected tax receipt ; or
  • A letter from the County Collector reflecting payment of taxes.
  • For a boat or vessel renewal you will pay:

    • The $6.00 processing fee.

    Georgia Certificate Of Boat Registration

    Boat Registration Renewal

    You must have a Georgia Certificate of Boat Registration and a validation decal to legally operate your boat or personal watercraft on public waters in Georgia. The only exceptions are:

    • Sailboats under 12 feet in length
    • Canoes, kayaks, rowboats and rubber rafts that have no mechanical propulsion
    • Boats operated exclusively on private ponds or lakes

    The Certificate of Boat Registration and validation decal are obtained by submitting by mail the proper application and fee.

    This certificate must be onboard and available for inspection by an enforcement officer whenever the boat or PWC is operated.

    The registration number and validation decal must be displayed as follows:

    • Number must be painted, decaled or otherwise affixed to both sides of the bow
    • Number must read from left to right on both sides of the bow
    • Number must be in at least three-inch-high block letters
    • Numbers color must contrast with its background
    • Letters must be separated from the numbers by a space or hyphen: “GA 3717 ZW” or “GA-3717-ZW”
    • No other numbers may be displayed

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    What Do I Use The Hin For On A Boat

    HINs are a way to identify a boat, like a serial number.

    HINs will be on any manufacturing certificates, titles, registrations, or federal documents associated with the boat. You can use the number to check and see if the boat is stolen or if any other problems have been reported.

    To find information about a particular HIN you can use an online service or check with local authorities.

    How To Research A Boat Registration Number

    Boat registration numbers come at two levels, state and federal. Smaller recreational and commercial vessels use state registration. Owning and operating recreational and commercial vessels with larger carrying capacities require federal documentation. If you need to find a boat’s owner or verify whether or not there is a lien holder, research registration and documentation numbers at the state and federal levels to discover the vessel’s chain of ownership and any lien information.

    Step 1

    Locate the registration or documentation number on the exterior of the boat. State registration numbers are commonly displayed on both sides of the bow with 4-inch painted numbers or stickers. Federal numbers are displayed anywhere on the boat’s exterior that is visible from the water.

    Step 2

    Locate the vessel’s hull number stamped or cast into the transom of the boat, and one other place such as a deck beam or other permanent structural member located in the engine room or hold. Hull numbers identify the vessel using the manufacturer’s database. Use this number to confirm that the boat matches the registration number.

    Step 3


    • Capt. TJ Hinton; commercial fishing vessel captain; Gulf Coast, Miss.


    Things You’ll Need

    • Registration or federal documentation number
    • Hull number

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