Can You Claim an Abandoned Boat? What to Know Before You Try the Claim

Abandoned Boat

In the rare event that you find an abandoned vessel, you may be wondering if you can put it to use. So, can you claim an abandoned boat? Here’s what you need to know about that.

Can You Claim an Abandoned Boat?

If you want to claim an abandoned boat for yourself, you will first need to confirm whether the vessel is actually abandoned or not. This means that you’ll need to consult with Transport Canada about whether or not there are official ownership claims over the vessel.

Consult the Vessel’s Ownership Status

So, can you claim an abandoned boat? You’ll need to know whether it is actually abandoned or not. The best way to do this is to request historical research on a vessel, which will provide information from the Ship Registration Computer System Database from 1984 to the present, or from microfilm if the vessel was registered prior to 1984. In order to do so, the process will require the official number or the vessel name in order to carry out the consultation. This process is for registered vessels only, and it won’t include vessels licensed under the Pleasure Craft Licensing system. You can easily take care of this request here through our platform.

Figure Out What You Can Do With the Vessel

Once you’ve consulted the registry and found out about the boat’s ownership status, it will be time to figure out what to do with it. If you find out that it is indeed registered under an official owner, you have the option of trying to reach them. By definition, an abandoned vessel is one that has been relinquished, left, or given up by the lawful owner without the intention to later resume any right or interest in the vessel. This means that should you find an abandoned boat, it has been relinquished to a certain degree by its owner. Of course, this abandoned boat might be a boat that has been lost or stolen, so reaching out to the registered owner is always a good idea. There will be another situation that you might need to take into account, though.

Military or Government Boats

In the case you run into what is clearly an abandoned government or a military vessel, you don’t have to do much about it beyond reaching out to Transport Canada. They will take care of collecting and disposing of the vessel going forward, which is something important to keep in mind. You can’t do anything to the vessel, so be sure to go through the right process.

Register a Vessel in Canada

The process of registering a vessel in Canada can be somewhat confusing or intimidating, but only if you’re doing it on your own. With the help of the National Vessel Registry Center, the registration and licensing processes for boats, as well as other similar paperwork and applications, will be all that much easier. Regardless of what you need to submit to Transport Canada, you will find everything you need to do so here on our website. And not only that, but you will also be able to fill them out and submit them directly through the platform. And should you have any questions at some point or need help with anything, you can always contact us through our number or our site.