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  #11  
Old 06-22-2012
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Re: State Registration of Documented Vessels

Quote:
Originally Posted by tomandchris View Post
Your answer is somewhere in the Maryland Sec of States website. It is truly a way to track the boat and make certain that it is paying the correct taxes. They always want their money!

In almost all jurisdictions you do not have to put registration numbers on a documented velle, just a sticker. However, dependent on who the enforcement is done by, you may have a problem. CG will know the rules and you should not have a problem. Local county and DNR are another issue. I have a documented vessel sailing Lake Michigan. I just added the total registration numbers to the boat to save the hassle. You may be totally in the right, but if they issue you a citation you have to deal with it. Rather than take the time to fight the issue I put the numbers on and never get bothered. I could stand on the principle, but I have better use of my time and pick other issues to challenge.
Yes, you are dead on the mark. The government knows all too well that most people will just take the path of least resistance. That is how they get deeper and deeper into our pockets every day. Every law is legal until challenged and they count on that.

As I understand the law, at least from the past, it was illegal, according to the documentation information, to document and also state register. Just because you do not show the numbers does not mean that you are not state registered. To have only sticker displayed is the same as having the numbers displayed also. Another government game. It is all about the money, and always is with government.

I do not display a state sticker. I have the sticker on board and the state registration also. I have not been stopped here in my state. I was stopped in FL recently, by the water cops, not the CG. They were very courteous and asked to see my documentation information. After viewing same they asked about the state sticker. I showed the loose sticker to them and advised them that it was my understanding that a documented vessel could not display numbers or a sticker as that would indicate that the vessel was registered both with the CG and with the state. They were satisfied and left without boarding or further discussion on the matter.

I agree with the OP that they are apparently aware that they may be on thin ice if taken to court. It is that way with many laws. If a successful challenge to the law was made, they would stand to loose a substantial revenue source. They probably do not wish to chance a hearing on the issue and bluff their way around, knowing that most will fall in line.

I have been doing it my way for the last five years, but who knows what tomorrow brings.
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Last edited by Leocat66; 06-22-2012 at 10:51 PM.
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  #12  
Old 06-23-2012
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Re: State Registration of Documented Vessels

I have been dealing with this a lot lately as more and more states are starting to require registration even if you are documented. At this point I highly doubt a court would toss the laws since they have been in force for so long, but if anyone want to pay to challenge them I would be happy to take the case.

What lead us to this is that many boaters would never pay sales taxes on their boats, by buying them in one state, but claiming they were removing it to another. Then documenting the vessel. Since no one informed the nominal 'home' state that a boat had even been sold no one knew they were owed sales tax. To close this loop hole states started requiring registration in addition to documentation, and the USCG doesn't really care, so long as the states only apply it to recreational vessels.

The reality is that the cost to challenge the law is much higher than the nominal fee it costs to register, so there is no point in challenging it. Unless of course you haven't paid sales tax, in which case taking something to court is a really bad idea. You might win on the registration issue, and end up in jail for tax evasion.
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  #13  
Old 06-23-2012
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Re: State Registration of Documented Vessels

Documentation is nothing more than the federal version of a State title. It allows for confirming ownership and recording liens. Registration is an entirely different concept. Registration is permission to use your boat within a State's waters. Most (all?) states have a rule on when you must register there if you stay within their boarders long enough. That is entirely up to the individual state. Whether you then owe them Use Tax, which is a version of Sales Tax on items purchased outside their State, is a third matter.
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Old 06-23-2012
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Re: State Registration of Documented Vessels

Gotta do it in NY sticker no numbers

Why should i get to use my boat for free and not pay for the services ?

And in all seriousness we do get a LOT of on the water service as i love having 7 harbor-master/police boats watching my every move
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Old 06-23-2012
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Re: State Registration of Documented Vessels

I like how a lot of people these days just go.....I'd paid it to avoid the hassle . That's what made this country great . There actually was a guy in the Continental Congress who acknowledged that the British were pesky , but it would be easier to just pay them & avoid the hassle . His name was Ima Spineless ******** ......just sayin
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Re: State Registration of Documented Vessels

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I like how a lot of people these days just go.....I'd paid it to avoid the hassle . That's what made this country great . There actually was a guy in the Continental Congress who acknowledged that the British were pesky , but it would be easier to just pay them & avoid the hassle . His name was Ima Spineless ******** ......just sayin
$5.00 a year for a sticker is the cost of one domestic beer at a bar. If you want to pick a fight with the State over a beer a year be my guest. Let us know how that works out for you.
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Old 06-23-2012
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Re: State Registration of Documented Vessels

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Originally Posted by SVAuspicious View Post
The MD requirement is for use tax, not registration per se. You have to pay the tax and carry the stickers. You don't show registration numbers on a documented boat.
And they have been discussing some very large hikes in the next few years.
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  #18  
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Re: State Registration of Documented Vessels

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Originally Posted by kjango View Post
I like how a lot of people these days just go.....I'd paid it to avoid the hassle . That's what made this country great . There actually was a guy in the Continental Congress who acknowledged that the British were pesky , but it would be easier to just pay them & avoid the hassle . His name was Ima Spineless ******** ......just sayin
To start work on a case like this I would ask for a minimum of a $10,000 retainer. With the understanding that costs could easily reach $50,000. If we needed to bring in experts in particular fields the cost to do so would go up from there.

The cost for the sticker is about $5 (here in Louisiana it's $50).

If someone wanted to bring a case like this I would be happy to handle it, but it would be hard to justify financially. And few people really care about principal when it will cost them a lot of money to stand up for it, and bowing in is really cheap.

And like I said, for most people the bigger problem is making sure their paperwork is in order. Since getting to court and realizing that the client 'forgot' to pay sales tax on their boat....
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  #19  
Old 06-23-2012
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Re: State Registration of Documented Vessels

Once the camel has his head under the tent, we are all in the sand storm.

It is still all about the money, and states, if not challenged, will continue to raise the fees to wherever they please. This issue is similar to the ongoing fight over anchoring rights and mooring fields by states and local municipality's. Thank goodness there are those brave souls who have taken on that challenge instead of just rolling over.
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  #20  
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Re: State Registration of Documented Vessels

I guess, I don't " get it" How does not paying a fee, and subjecting oneself to being stopped and fined...constitute fighting the good fight?

Wouldn't one be better off joining Boat US and supporting their lobbying efforts.
Writing your elected representatives. Joining a state mariners/captain's association etc.

I see a difference between having ones head in the sand, and having it up ones patootie.
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