Reward for lost Kraken!
Join Date: Apr 2006
Thanked 132 Times in 129 Posts
Rep Power: 11
Otaga, I suspect that you can form a corporation with your wife, and as long as she owns 51% of the corporation, then it is a "US corporation" which can hold USCG documentation for the boat. Yes, that could raise liability issues as an asset of hers, but I also suspect any decent shyster lawyer could find some way to protect it further. If you've got enough money to worry about liability beyond her malpractice...you should probably have a shyster lawyer available to deal with some of those issues. There are all sorts of ways to protect assets, lawyers tend to know more about them than sailors. Perhaps a shell corporation (to make the asset hard to discover) and then the real corporation, which would be structured so as to give the minority partner (you) the right to buy the asset out immediately for another dollar at a future date, so if need be you could "pull the trigger" and seize the asset before anyone else did.
As a Resident Alien, you probably would have no problems simply putting state registration on the boat. Within the US, that's all anyone wants. You'd have to ask the Canadians how they feel about that, with the changes ongoing since 9/11 and reciprocal sniping about paperwork, those change from time to time.
Since you can establish chain of title up to your purchase, you should be able to document the vessel at a future date with whoever as long as you are still the owner--you'd be the only "missing" link in the chain. But again...you should check on that with the appropriate government or lawyers.