Yacht Documentation for Your Recreational Vessel

yacht documentation

There is a common misconception among new vessel owners regarding recreational vessels, such as yachts, and their registration with the United States Coast Guard. Some people will say you only have to register commercial vessels, but they’d be mistaken. If your yacht fulfills the criteria outlined below, you will have to get your yacht documentation in order before you set sail.

Registering Your Yacht with the Coast Guard

Ships and vessels are documented with the Coast Guard according to use, be it recreational or commercial. These divisions are very particular in that they allow, for you can use a commercial vessel for recreational purposes but not the other way around. This is why so important that, should your vessel fulfill the requirements described below, you obtain your yacht documentation and enjoy your recreational vessel accordingly. 

Keep This in Mind First

So, first of all, let’s talk about who exactly gets to register their vessel with the United States Coast Guard. There are certain requirements that anyone who plans to do so needs to keep in mind when starting the process.

  • The vessel has to be wholly owned by a citizen of the United States.
  • The vessel must measure at least five net tons (exceptions to this only apply for certain oil spill response vessels). A helpful hint: any vessel that measures more than 25 feet is likely to measure five net tons.
  • The vessel needs to be given a name and a hailing port, both of which should be displayed in four-inch block letters on the hull of the vessel.
  • Federally documented vessels are not required to display state registration numbers, but you may still be required to register the vessel with the state.

Submit Your Yacht Documentation

So, now that you know whether or not you are going to need to register your yacht, let’s talk about how you are going to do so. Don’t worry, it’s not that complicated. You will first need to head over to the initial registration tab on our sidebar menu. Fill out any relevant information regarding the vessel and the owner. This will involve mostly manufacturing information about the vessel and contact data for the owner, so nothing that will be too hard to fill out. Once it’s all done, all you need to do is pay for the application fee and submit it to our team of checkers. They will make sure that everything on the form is in order before actually submitting it to the Coast Guard so that you don’t end up having to deal with rejected or returned applications.

All Your Documentation Needs in One Site

This is only one of the many documentation forms that are relevant to vessel owners. The United States Coast Guard has a variety of different registration and documentation processes that you may need at one point or another. And, when you do, know that you will always be able to count on our team here at the Vessel Documentation Center. Whether you need yacht documentation or registration renewal, you can find all the necessary forms on our homepage and, should you need help, you can reach out to us. Give us a call at 1-866-981-8783 or email us at info@nvdcrenewal.us with your questions.