How to Switch Your Boat Registration to the United States from Canada

Boat Registration

Whether you are a boat owner in Canada and considering moving your registration to the United States, you may be wondering if it is worthwhile. Here is a look at some of the advantages of boat registration and the information you must have to make the transition successfully. Before beginning, ensure you receive advice from a professional since the procedure may be more challenging than you first anticipated. The following suggestions may help make the procedure as easy and stress-free as possible. Continue reading if you want to learn more!

Gather All of the Required Documents

You must transfer your boat’s registration to a state in the United States when you relocate there. In most cases, this is accomplished by submitting an application and associated fees to the National Vessel Registry Center. At the outset, you’ll need to prove your identity by presenting a valid photo ID and proof of residency in the state where the boat will be registered. In addition, you should bring any out-of-date boat registrations from other states (and make sure you know exactly what you’re bringing, as some states use different terminology for “expired,” such as “inactive”). 

Depending on your location and length of stay in the United States, you may also be required to submit certain forms and pay associated fees. Read our article on Boat Registration Forms for information on registering your boat and how much it will cost you. To complete the process of transferring registration, you may also need to obtain a new driver’s license.

Choose the Right State for Your Boat Registration

Transferring your boat registration from another nation to the United States is a simple procedure, but there are a few details to keep in mind. As a first step, if you want to stay in the United States permanently, whether, for work or leisure, you will likely need to register your boat here. This is especially true if you come from Canada, Mexico, or elsewhere. You don’t want to be fined and have your boat detained for breaking the law. 

These suggestions should help you go through it quickly and easily. Ensure to decide where you will store your boat, who will be the registered owner, and how you will pay for the change when you decide to move your boat’s registration to the United States. To help you feel prepared to make this change, we’ll go through each of these aspects in detail below. We’ll outline the expenses for each state, from the least costly to the most expensive, and provide advice if you decide the transfer isn’t worthwhile for you.

Research Fees and Taxes

It’s possible that, in addition to the boat registration price, you’ll have to fork over money in taxes and fees before your boat is legal in the new state. Sales taxes and excise taxes are two common ones. However, they may vary greatly from state to state (a tax on boats). Registration documents will detail whether the excise tax is a fixed rate or a percentage of the boat’s worth. Another thing to remember is that sales taxes are often paid at the time of registration, whereas excise taxes are collected yearly regardless of whether or not you’ve registered. 

A shorter wait time for registration is possible in the off-season (typically January through April) since agencies will be processing fewer registrations at once than in the peak season (April through December). If you want details on whether or not certain laws apply to your situation, it’s a good idea to look into state regulations.

Boat Registration

Complete the Paperwork

There is a great deal of culture shock when relocating from Canada to the United States. Among them is the need to renew your boat’s registration whenever you’ve crossed a border. The good news is that you may easily register your boat while towing it. The steps you need to do are as follows. To begin, you’ll want to ensure that you comply with all applicable state standards, which might vary somewhat from one to the next. To get started, you’ll need: Include: -A copy of your boat’s title (if it is registered) -A valid Canadian registration certificate, Hull Number: Unique identifier for the boat (HIN) -An affidavit form with the signatures of both the purchaser and the vendor. 

The next step is to contact the local United States Coast Guard station and request an application for a Certificate of Documentation for Vessels (CG-1210). They’ll offer you the address and contact information for the regional office so you can send in your application and schedule a time to drop off any additional paperwork. Costs are also involved; inquire at the local Coast Guard station for details.

Contact the National Vessel Registry Center at (800) 419-9569 if you want to transfer your boat’s registration from Canada to the United States. Even if you don’t live in the United States, the pros there will be available to guide you through each step of your boat registration. You’ll save time and money in the long run if you take this precaution, and your boat will also have all the documentation it needs to set sail.