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Requirements for vessel registration vary from state to state. In Indiana, you must have an Indiana certificate of registration to operate a vessel legally on public waters in Indiana. The only exceptions are:

  • Non-motorized vessels (Note: Vessels using an electric trolling motor require registration.)
  • Vessels purchased from a State of Indiana–registered, licensed dealer for 45 days if the operator possesses a bill of sale and a temporary license plate that is displayed on the forward portion of the boat.
  • Vessels that are moored on the Indiana part of Lake Michigan for 180 consecutive days or less.
  • Vessels that are registered in another state and...
    • Are operated on Indiana waters for 60 consecutive days or less or...
    • Have paid the current year’s Indiana boat excise tax.
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