Vessel Documentation Needed to Establish Ownership

Vessel Documentation Needed to Establish Ownership

Vessel documentation is a process of documenting a ship and giving it a nationality, which the ship has been documented. The nationality is a proof of vessel ownership allowing the ship to travel in international waters. International maritime law requires every ship to be registered in a country. A vessel adheres to the legislation of the flag state, where the ship is registered. So, one can say that a ship is sailing under the flag of the country where it has been documented.

One of the basic requirements to obtain a certificate of documentation for your vessel is to demonstrate that you are the owner of the boat. Now, if your ship has never been documented because it is still new, vessel ownership can be established by submitting a builder’s certification.

List of Vessel Documentation Needed to Establish Ownership

What Is A Builder’s Certification?

It is a form for manufacturers to certify building of a ship. If the boat is new, the name on the certificate must be the name of the applicant who is applying for a certificate of documentation. Mostly, it certifies that the boat was built for the applicant.

If the vessel is a second-hand, the name is the person to whom the ship was first transferred.

Another way to establish ownership is to submit a “Manufacturer’s Certificate of Origin,” if you bought it outside the US. You may also send a copy of the State of Registration or title. If the boat is purchased internationally, you must show a foreign registration to establish that you are the owner of the vessel.

Vessel Documentation Needed to Establish Ownership

Bills Of Sale

If your vessel has been previously owned or it is a second-hand, you must present bills of sale, in addition to Builder’s Certification. You may also show other evidence that can prove the transfer of ownership from the person who last documented, registered or titled the ship.

On the other hand, if the transfer was made other than a bill of sale, you may contact (866) 981-8783 and talk to one of the documentation processors of You may also send your questions or inquiries to

Obtaining a USCG certificate of documentation is now easier with the assistance of our documentation processors, who have been doing this job for many years. All you need to do is submit your requirements to our online portal and we will do the rest. We will update you of your application. The documenting process can take a few days or weeks.