You can forgo applying through Transport Canada to register your pleasure craft. That’s because you can also register a boat through the National Vessel Registry. Doing so will simplify the process and help you free up your time so you can focus on business obligations or family.
However, it still is important to understand why registering your boat is important although it is not mandatory. It still needs to be done, as it provides an extra measure of protection. Not only does registration help identify your boat during an emergency, it allows you to apply for a marine mortgage, if necessary.
Why You Should Register a Boat
When you register a boat, it gives you more latitude to substantiate ownership, along with your bill of sale, and to navigate the waters without worry.
So, what is involved in the registration process and how is it different from licensing?
Registration versus Licensing
Licensing Your Pleasure Craft in Canada
Unlike a boat operator’s license that proves your operator status, or that you can operate your boat, a pleasure craft license represents an ID number that you place on your boat so search and rescue (SAR) personnel can find you in an emergency.
While a pleasure craft license represents this I.D. number, a vessel registration shows that you have legal title, which backs up your proof of ownership (the bill of sale). The registration allows you to give your boat a unique name, an official number, and the right to use your boat as collateral for a marine mortgage.
Boat Licensing Requirements
Small Vessel Regulations in Canada require that boat owners of pleasure crafts of any size, equipped with motors of at least 10 horsepower or 7.5 KW, be licensed. You can get a boat license through the National Vessel Registry for 10 years and renew the license after that period.
If your boat has already been licensed, make sure it has the correct name and current address. Any change or renewal of your name or address is not the same as renewing your license.
Registering a Boat through the National Vessel Registry
Registering a boat involves selecting 3 names for your boat to ensure the name’s uniqueness. The boat’s name must not sound similar or be the same as another boat’s name in the registry. Otherwise, it defeats the purpose of naming the boat – to find your vessel in an emergency.
Part of the process involves completing an application for registry, showing evidence of ownership and title, and providing a statement of qualification. You will also need to have the boat measured for tonnage. Naturally, you can simplify this protocol by using the National Vessel Registry to complete a boat registration process.
Indeed, it is helpful to know the steps of the process and stay on top of your legal obligations along these lines. Doing so will reduce any administrative difficulties in operating your boat and will help you navigate the waters with confidence.
As the owner of a Canadian pleasure craft, you must know the regulations governing Canadian waterways. Therefore, it is important for you to gear yourself with the right equipment and to understand the procedures and differences between licensing and registration. Knowing these details will ensure your and your passengers’ safety and the safe navigation of other boaters.
The Advantages Experienced When You Register a Boat
Each vessel registered in Canada possesses a unique identification number. The ship’s tonnage, construction material, and type are displayed in the country’s registration database as well. As a registered boat owner, you are given the I.D. number and, again, can choose a unique name for your boat.
You also can fly the Canadian flag or display it on your boat. Per the 2001 Canada Shipping Act, registering a boat is optional if you own a pleasure craft. Regardless of your boat’s length or tonnage, registration is optional.
Registration remains valid as long as you’re the owner of the vessel. Always carry your registration onboard as well as the ownership paperwork (bill of sale). Doing so is extremely helpful if you cross from and to Canada into and out of the U.S.
Again, if you register your boat through the National Registry Center online, you can save a great deal of time, as you can use the site’s forms to RUSH through your license or registration paperwork.
It only takes minutes to complete an application and upload the necessary documents. Going through a secured and encrypted web portal saves you a good deal of money and time.
Register Your Pleasure Craft Today
Don’t delay the process if you wish to register a boat. Take the steps needed so you can operate your boat without delay. By going through the National Registry Center, you can simplify the process and ensure compliance.