USCG Documentation Search: Accessing Vital Vessel Details

uscg documentation search

USCG documentation search is a vital tool for many vessel owners like you. This tool can provide you access to important boat information and documents. The USCG National Vessel Documentation Center (NVDC) maintains a database of all documented vessels. But you can use our service to search by vessel name or documentation number. 

Accessing Vital Information Through USCG Documentation Search 

Coast Guard documentation is a form of owner registration. If you are planning to invest in a used boat, you may use our search tool to find out the vessel ownership, dimensions, and many other pertinent details about the boat you are planning to buy. If you are not sure whether or not the boat is properly documented, you can just use our service to determine its documentation. 


The search tool will provide you with detailed information on the boat, including its current documentation status, ownership, information, and outstanding liens or encumbrances. And as a boat owner, you can access copies of your certificate of documentation through this tool. Our search tool is particularly valuable for you if you want to purchase or sell a vessel. It provides you with important information on the boat’s documentation status and ownership history. As an owner, you can use it to ensure that your documentation is up to date and you can verify the accuracy of the information on file. 

Can You Search All Vessels? 

Even though the documentation search tool is a valuable resource, it is vital to note that not all boats are documented with the USCG. Keep in mind that smaller vessels or those that are used only for recreational purposes are not required to be documented. In that case, you may not see it in the database. Furthermore, you should be aware that some details, like ownership or lien information, are not immediately available. They may also require additional documentation or verification. 

Proves Legal Ownership 

Coast Guard documentation is a form of owner registration. Thus, if you disagree with another party, you may just show the paperwork to your advantage. The documentation of your boat is helpful in a lawsuit involving your vessel. Having a record of ownership on file is beneficial to you as a boat owner in case of a legal dispute. Documenting it with the USCG is generally the option if you have a larger boat used in international bodies of water. However, if you will use it on inland lakes, titling it through your state may be a general choice to prove your legal ownership. 

International Waters 

In addition to having proof of ownership, documenting your boat will also help you travel into international waters. Since you can use the US flag, you have some protections. The document will also assist you in gaining clearance into a certain country. 

uscg documentation search

Search for a Documented Boat

If you are in the process of buying a documented boat and you wish to verify its documentation, simply use our USCG documentation search tool. Or you may contact our team to further assist you.