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It's the Law

Other Facts About Titling and Registering


You must obtain a title for all outboard motors, just as you would a vessel. Battery-operated trolling motors are an exception.

A Certificate of Number is valid for two years. You will receive a renewal notice about three months prior to the expiration date. The expiration date is on the certificate and the decals.

If you have changed addresses within those two years, you must call or write Texas Parks and Wildlife Department (TPWD) within 15 days of your change of address in order to get your renewal notice.

If you abandon or destroy your vessel, you must report it to TPWD within 15 days and surrender your Certificate of Number and title if applicable.

If you lose or destroy your Certificate of Number, you must complete a “duplicate form” and submit a processing fee.

To apply for a Certificate of Number and decals for a homemade vessel, you must submit the following, in addition to completed application forms and title fees:

  • An affidavit regarding the origin of the vessel and receipts for materials used in its construction
  • An inspection and certification by a Texas game warden

Larger recreational vessels owned by U.S. citizens may (at the option of the owner) be documented by the U.S. Coast Guard (USCG). Call the USCG at 1-800-799-8362 for more information. Documented vessels also must be registered with TPWD.