Join Date: Feb 2010
Location: Narragansett Bay
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Re: Venting about homemade boat registration in Pennsylvania
There are some weird references and presumptions above that seem to be confusing the matter.
If you choose to document your vessel, with the USCG, that document serves as your federal form of title to your boat. Some refer to it as a federal form of "registration", which isn't wrong, but the real purpose is to show who owns the vessel and provide a single point to file liens. If they OP has their new documentation, then title has successfully transferred and you don't need anything from any State.
State registration is imposed as a permit to use your property within their borders for longer than a typical transient might stay. Each State defines that timeframe for themselves. That time frame can be different for out of state residents and in-state residents. For example, if I visit another state, I may get a 90 day period to move on or need to register. That State's own residents may be required to register on the same day they arrive. Each State's rules are different. The bottom line is, you don't get to register in one State and get any long term rights in another.
Another point of fact that confuses many is the hailport that you include on your USCG documentation. This hailport has absolutely no relevance, whatsoever, to where the boat is kept, where you live, where you have permission to be, or anything else. It simply must be a valid city/state in the US, even a land-locked place. It has no impact on State registration, nor accrues any rights to be anywhere.
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