Don’t Let Your Canadian Boat Registration Lapse

Canadian Boat Registration

As the sun began to set over the calm Canadian waters, John climbed on the deck of his boat. He had been looking forward to this day for weeks.

However, as he reached for the certificate of registry, he realized to his horror that it had expired – he had not received a renewal update.

Operating a Watercraft Without a Canadian Boat Registration

A feeling of dread washed over him as he considered the consequences of operating a boat without a Canadian boat registration.

He knew he had to act fast. He immediately got online to check what may have happened. Renewal is supposed to occur every three years, and boat owners are supposed to receive a notice a month before the expiration date.

If you don’t receive a notice of expiry before your renewal date, you need to find out what happened by contacting the Vessel Registration Office right away. If expiation is only two weeks away, contact the Office without delay.

Completing a Change of Address

John had not completed a change of address, so he needed to do so immediately. He sent the address change to the Registrar at his Port of Registry, with the following info:

  • The name of his pleasure craft
  • The boat’s official number
  • The port of registry
  • His name, as the owner

John later found out that the registration was suspended because he had not made the address change or updated his contact details and registration information.

By acting quickly online, the boat owner was able to stay legal and operate his boat on the Canadian waterways in lightning-quick time.

He also completed a safety check of his boat’s equipment. He made a mental note to himself to check, in the future, on his next renewal ahead of time. Keeping current on your boat’s registration requirements is an important part of boat ownership and compliance.

Why You Need to Keep Up to Date

A pleasure boat registration provides you with the legal right to operate a boat in Canada, and it also indicates that the boat is equipped with all of the proper safety and navigational devices.

Failure to renew your pleasure boat registration can have serious repercussions. The fine for operating a boat without registration is $250.

Do You Need to Transfer the Registration?

To transfer the boat registration to another person or entity, you must fill out a  transfer application form. This form is signed by both the current and new owners of the boat.

Once the application is processed, the new owner receives a valid pleasure boat registration certification – a document that is supposed to be displayed onboard the boat at all times. 

If you need to renew your pleasure boat registration after it has expired, you must submit a renewal application form online. Submit proof of ownership, such as a copy of a bill of sale. 

When renewing a registration, you’ll typically:

  • Complete the reason(s) for your application – choose Renewal and include your official number
  • Complete a section, Applicable for Transfer of Ownership or Renewal only

You’ll also need to provide owner details and complete the payment information online.

What About Insurance?

When registering a pleasure boat, you might wonder about insurance. It’s not mandatory, in all cases, that you buy the insurance. However, it’s advised that you get the protection. For instance, if you store your vessel at a marina, you may need to show proof of insurance. Also, if you finance a boat, your lender will require that you buy insurance before they approve the loan for your vessel.

Checking Your Boat’s Equipment

In addition to renewing your pleasure boat registration, you should inspect and certify the boat’s safety equipment on a regular basis. This includes checking the boat’s navigational lights, fire extinguishers, life jackets, and similar gear and equipment.

In addition, you should complete a safety check of the boat’s engine and fuel system. This includes checking the oil and fuel filters, spark plugs, fuel lines, and other components of the engine and fuel system. 

Transport Canada sponsors a free volunteer courtesy check program to ensure that you have all the proper navigational equipment in place and that it is in working order,

This added service is a great way to make sure you comply with safety regulations and that you avoid problems during operation.

Canadian Boat Registration

Submit Your Canadian Boat Registration Application Now

As you can see, Canadian boat registration is important to have if you enjoy recreational boating. Get registered now through the Canadian Vessel Registry and support a safer and happier boating experience.