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post #1 of 37 Old 06-22-2012 Thread Starter
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State Registration of Documented Vessels

Maryland, along with some other states, requires state registration, even if the vessel is documented through the Coast Guard. When I was running a charter business, my lawyer (an expert in maritime law) advised me that I could ignore state registrations for documented vessels. Recently, I was given a warning by Maryland DNR for failing to have a state registration.

Anybody have any knowledge of states enforcing this requirement? In Maryland, it's only $10 to register a documented vessel (although it appears I'll have to actually go to DNR requiring a day of running around), but it seems to me that if the boat is Federally documented, the state should have no right to take an additional pound of flesh.

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post #2 of 37 Old 06-22-2012
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Re: State Registration of Documented Vessels

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Originally Posted by johnnyquest37 View Post
Anybody have any knowledge of states enforcing this requirement? In Maryland, it's only $10 to register a documented vessel (although it appears I'll have to actually go to DNR requiring a day of running around), but it seems to me that if the boat is Federally documented, the state should have no right to take an additional pound of flesh.
I'm not sure I understand your question. If you were given a warning by the state and they know your vessel is documented, it sounds like they are enforcing it.

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post #3 of 37 Old 06-22-2012
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Re: State Registration of Documented Vessels

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.

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post #4 of 37 Old 06-22-2012 Thread Starter
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Re: State Registration of Documented Vessels

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I'm not sure I understand your question. If you were given a warning by the state and they know your vessel is documented, it sounds like they are enforcing it.
Well, it was a warning, not an actual citation. Methinks they know that they can't cite me, but I don't know. Have heard a rumor that they enforce this by citing the marina owners for knowingly harboring unregistered vessels. Marina owner gets a fine and the boat owner gets his sticker or the marina owner boots him out of the marina. So, I have rumor and conjecture.

Ever heard of anyone actually being fined for this?

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post #5 of 37 Old 06-22-2012
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Re: State Registration of Documented Vessels

They can cite you, and perhaps will, if there is reason to believe that your boat spends more time in MD waters than the waters of any other state. (Other states have other requirements, in FL its > 90 days, and then the cost is $85/year and up.) Dave is right, its a USE tax not a registration.


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post #6 of 37 Old 06-22-2012 Thread Starter
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Re: State Registration of Documented Vessels

Believe that the $10 is technically a fee, as opposed to a tax. At least, the DNR web site lists the $10 Docuementation Sticker along with the other fees they charge for registration-type stuff. I paid the 5% excise tax and the sales tax when I bought the boat.

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post #7 of 37 Old 06-22-2012
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Re: State Registration of Documented Vessels

Based on what I read on the DNR site, you only needed to pay the excise tax and pay a $10.00 fee for a documentation sticker. It looks like the Documented vessel sticker is good for 2 years.

But I'm not from Maryland, there are plenty of Maryland sailors here, who must own documented vessels and can weigh in.

Here's the relevant links:

Maryland Department of Natural Resources - Boating

And the form : http://www.dnr.state.md.us/download/DNRB-240.pdf
There's a box at the top for Decal only..for Documented Vessels

But you appear to know this.

At $5.00 per year, I would just pay it, and save yourself the aggravation.
It also looks like you can mail it in...

I'm a documented vessel and have to pay $52.00 per year to register my boat in NJ. The only thing Documentation affords me in NJ is not having to put the numbers on my bow.

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Re: State Registration of Documented Vessels

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Anybody have any knowledge of states enforcing this requirement?
I found out quite after the fact that here in FL you do have to have a State registration sticker on a documented vessel. You don't display bow numbers, though. When I bought my boat I was told by the lady at the DMV that I didn't need a registration, but she was incorrect.
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post #9 of 37 Old 06-22-2012
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Re: State Registration of Documented Vessels

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.
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post #10 of 37 Old 06-22-2012
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Quote:
Originally Posted by johnnyquest37:887882
Maryland, along with some other states, requires state registration, even if the vessel is documented through the Coast Guard. When I was running a charter business, my lawyer (an expert in maritime law) advised me that I could ignore state registrations for documented vessels. Recently, I was given a warning by Maryland DNR for failing to have a state registration.

Anybody have any knowledge of states enforcing this requirement? In Maryland, it's only $10 to register a documented vessel (although it appears I'll have to actually go to DNR requiring a day of running around), but it seems to me that if the boat is Federally documented, the state should have no right to take an additional pound of flesh.
Yes and the CG approves. http://www.uscg.mil/hq/cg5/nvdc/nvdcfaq.asp
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