USCG Documentation Endorsements: Endorse Your Vessel’s Freedom

USCG documentation

Do you want to use your documented vessel to make some money? Is there a plan in place on how you’re going to utilize your vessel in a commercial fashion, but you want to make certain that you’re in compliance with the powers that be? So many of our clients initially come to us because they know how they want to use their vessel, they just want to be certain to “dot every i and cross every t,” so to speak. One part of USCG documentation that even some experienced vessel owners can find confusing: the endorsements. Picking the right endorsement is crucial for your vessel. 

The Endorsements Explained 

If your vessel measures five net tons or more in volume, you have the choice to get it documented. If you’re going to use your vessel for commerce, then you need to get it endorsed (with some rare exceptions). Every documented vessel has an “endorsement.” These endorsements are basically the different kinds of documentation. They state how you’re going to use your vessel. The most common types of endorsements are: recreation, registry, coastwise, and fishery. When you fill out your initial documentation, you’ll be able to choose the appropriate endorsement right here on our site. 

USCG documentation

Which Endorsements Go For What Vessel 

“Fishery” is more or less what it sounds like: you’re going to use your vessel for commercial fishing operations on the navigable waters of the United States and/or the Exclusive Economic Zone (EEZ). “Coastwise” means that you’re going to transport people and/or goods on those same waters. “Registry” may sound a bit redundant (“I need to register my vessel with a Registry endorsement?”) But, this endorsement is actually for vessels that are going to be engaging in foreign trade. “Recreation” is what it sounds like as well: you’re going to use your vessel to have fun. That said, you can use any kind of vessel for recreational purposes: you can only use a vessel with a “Recreation” endorsement recreationally. 

Can You Change Your Endorsement? 

Yes! At our site, you can utilize our form for “Change of Endorsement/Trade Indicator” to alter your endorsement. Not many realize this, but “Recreation” is the most popular endorsement. That’s because many vessel owners get their vessels documented just so they can take advantage of a Preferred Ship’s Mortgage, to get the best financing possible for their vessel. 

One Stop Shop for All of Your USCG Documentation Needs 

The endorsements are an important part of vessel documentation. But, they are just one part. Indeed, we offer just about everything you’ll need in terms of vessel documentation. From the researching period before you buy a boat (the Abstract of Title) through the time when you get that initial documentation, the time it comes to renew it, and so much more, you can find just about everything you and your vessel will need here at our site. Best of all, we’ve made it so that these forms are very easy to fill out. For more, click here.