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Here are some additional facts about titling and registering your vessel.

  • Titling of vessels is mandatory in North Carolina. Anyone who purchases or transfers ownership of a motorized vessel or sailboat 14 feet or longer or who owns a personal watercraft (PWC), also known as jet ski, must have a title for the vessel. Vessels documented with the USCG are exempt from obtaining a title.
  • A Certificate of Number is valid for either one or three years, at the option of the owner. The Certificate of Number must be renewed on or before the first day of the month following the month of expiration shown on the validation decal. Renewal notices are mailed to all owners of registered vessels 60 days before their date of expiration. You can renew over the telephone by calling 1-800-628-3773.
  • If you change your address or if you abandon or destroy your vessel, you must call or write the NCWRC within 15 days.
  • If you lose or destroy your Certificate of Number or decal, you must apply to the NCWRC for a duplicate and submit a processing fee.
  • If your vessel is lost or stolen, notify the NCWRC and local law enforcement authorities immediately.
  • Vessels registered in another state may operate on North Carolina waters for 60 days before North Carolina registration and numbering are required.
  • Larger recreational vessels owned by U.S. citizens may (at the option of the owner) be documented by the USCG. Call the USCG at 1-800-799-8362 for more information.
  • Registration and title application forms can be obtained:
    • From the Watercraft Titling & Registration Section of the NCWRC
    • From many marine dealers or other local vessel registration agents
    • By calling 1-800-628-3773
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