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It's the Law

Buying or Selling a Vessel

The steps for transferring ownership of a vessel are essentially the same whether you are purchasing a new or used boat from a dealer or a used boat from an individual.

If a vessel or outboard motor is sold or otherwise transferred to another person:

  • The buyer of a used vessel or outboard motor must apply for the registration and title to be transferred to his or her name within 30 days from the date of purchase.
  • The buyer of a new vessel or outboard motor must apply for new registration and titling within 30 days.
  • The Department of Revenue or an authorized dealer may issue a temporary operating permit, valid for 30 days, to permit lawful operation of the vessel or outboard motor until titling and registration are complete.

Note: A vessel and/or outboard motor must have proper registration in the current owner’s name or a non-expired temporary registration permit on board before it can be used on the water.