Should i Document my boat

Discussion in 'General Discussion' started by Michael Mirra, Dec 3, 2019.

  1. b_arrington

    b_arrington Well-Known Member GOLD Sponsor

    Feb 21, 2007
    Setauket, NY
    2018 Back Cove 34
    Cummins QSB 6.7 480
    Yep. Confirm that NY still requires the registration sticker and associated fees.

    I was required to document my boat by my lien holder. They want to be able to make first claim and recover to the boat if there are any issues, like theft, etc. It helps secure the collateral.

    Relative to my comment about hailing ports. There was a question about trying to find the most advantageous place to register the boat based on state tax structures. If you have a boat documented and the hailing port is one state while it physically is located in another, it may draw some additional scrutiny relative to payment of taxes. Over the years I have heard of tax collectors walking the docks to ensure they get their payments. Also, I have heard (I don't know for sure) that some states require boats to be registered in the state based on how long it's located there. ie, if a boat owner lives in NJ the vessel is berthed in South Carolina for over 45 days (just an example!), SC may require the boat be officially registered there.
     
    JVM225 likes this.
  2. Woody

    Woody Well-Known Member PLATINUM Sponsor

    Nov 20, 2007
    N. Wisconsin/Lk Superior
    2005 420DA
    Cummins 6CTA8.3
    Correct, I've never checked to see if all states require it, but for sure most do and the length of time is not always the same. Over 90 consecutive days in NY. WI and MI it's 60 days consecutive. I'm documented, my home port is where I live in WI, my boat is registered in WI, winter layup is in WI, but I rent a full season slip each year in MI. At the same time I often rent a slip in WI and stay for 60+ days. When I registered my boat I chose WI because the sales tax was lower.
     
  3. Blueone

    Blueone Well-Known Member GOLD Sponsor

    Jan 24, 2007
    Lake Erie, Ohio
    2004 420 Sundancer
    Cummins 6CTA 450's
    I looked around a bit because my boat is registered in Michigan but spends most of the summer in Ohio.
    All I could find was if you are out of state and spend more than 60 days in Michigan you must change your registration. In Ohio it says "welcome all visitors", and your documentation must be current and match your title to your residence...no mention of time
     
  4. Henry Boyd

    Henry Boyd Well-Known Member GOLD Sponsor

    Apr 24, 2007
    Newburyport, on the peaceful and serene Merrimack
    ‘09 Sabre 38 Hardtop Express “Serenity”
    Volvo D6 w/IPS450 Pods
    As Brad mentioned there are often requirements by a lender to Document. Besides the issues mentioned in his post there is a significant one that is of value. While not creating a legal document called "title", documentation creates the functional equivalent. The USCG is serious about keeping track of documented vessels and in the eyes of lenders a clean bill of health from the CG is just as good as a state title. Which is the other thing the accuracy state titles can be inconsistent. In large parts due to the number of states that don't issue titles, or that have started issuing them "recently". Recently in quotes because titling might not have been in existence long enough for old untitled boats to still exist. This condition does not exist for motor vehicles because the Feds tie highway funding to proof of accurate titling and registration. There is no such incentive personal property like boats.

    H
     
  5. bbwhitejr

    bbwhitejr Well-Known Member SILVER Sponsor

    Apr 14, 2013
    Lake Lanier GA
    2007 44DB
    Cummins QSC 8.3s
    Same in GA.

    One big thing in GA is...buy from a private party and pay no sales tax...buy through a broker and pay the 7%.....

    Bennett
     
  6. Woody

    Woody Well-Known Member PLATINUM Sponsor

    Nov 20, 2007
    N. Wisconsin/Lk Superior
    2005 420DA
    Cummins 6CTA8.3
    I think you'd be in the same situation as me, depending on which state I register in and where I'm hanging out, if it exceeds 60 days, I'm in violation of one state or the other. That's what I think anyway, I've never called either state to ask about this situation.

    Exempt from Registration in Ohio:
    • vessels exempt from numbering EXCEPT documented vessels
    • vessels issued commercial documentation and used exclusively for commercial purposes
    • vessels meeting another state's registration system requirements which are used in Ohio for less than 60 days.
    Documented Vessels (over 5 net tons)
    ORC 1547.531
    Documentation is a federal registration system administered by the US Coast Guard. Boats must be at least 5 net tons to be eligible, which is roughly 30 feet or more in length.

    No person shall operate a documented vessel unless the certificate of documentation is valid and available for inspection. The vessel must display the official number, the vessel name and home port.

    Documented vessels must be registered in Ohio and display two Ohio tags, but they are not assigned an Ohio number
     
    Blueone likes this.
  7. Spark600

    Spark600 Member

    90
    Dec 28, 2013
    Long Island NY
    2008 Sundancer with 496 SeaCore Bravo 3
    Kohler Generator
    Mercury dinghy
    496 SeaCore Bravo 3
    In NY with documenting you still have to pay the registration and taxes as I know I have been pulled over for not having the registration sticker only ( no numbers ) and got a ticket. Had to go to the motor vehicle to get the registration and pay the taxes.
     
    JVM225 likes this.
  8. Blueone

    Blueone Well-Known Member GOLD Sponsor

    Jan 24, 2007
    Lake Erie, Ohio
    2004 420 Sundancer
    Cummins 6CTA 450's
    I like my answer better
     
  9. FootballFan

    FootballFan Well-Known Member

    Jun 20, 2012
    Florida
    Marquis 59
    MTU Series 60
    My experience last year with being in Maryland for several months, they honor the fact that our boat was registered with taxes paid in FL, did not require the taxes to be paid in MD.
     
  10. JVM225

    JVM225 Well-Known Member GOLD Sponsor

    Apr 8, 2008
    Farmingdale, NY
    2002 410 Sundancer, Monaco Edition.
    3126 Cats.
    Absolutely!
    Keeping a boat in New York that you register in another state to avoid the NY taxes is a bad idea.
    It’s not something you want to get caught doing.
    I’ve heard many stories about the tax guys walking docks and then checking marina contracts.
    Ironically, sidewalk vendors and similar people who “make money off the books” operate here tax free seemingly with impunity.
    But there is no end to the lengths that the State will go to collect sales tax on boats or income tax from someone who claims to have moved their primary residence to another State.
    I personally know of 3 couples who in recent years have established primary residence in Florida while maintaining a summer residence in NY and the State has gone after all of them to the extent that they are downright anal about documenting the time they spend in Florida.
    Hmmmm..........might there be a pattern here...........
     
  11. highslice

    highslice Well-Known Member

    Mar 28, 2008
    Table Rock Lake, Hollister Missouri
    270 SLX
    496 Mag
    Bravo III
    Corsa
    We documented ours for a couple reasons:

    Missouri does not charge full sales tax on documented boats. They have a replacement tax that saved us a couple thousand.

    I hate the registration numbers. We still have to pay $100 every 2 years for state registration stickers.
     
    Chris-380 likes this.
  12. Handsome Transom

    Handsome Transom Active Member GOLD Sponsor

    554
    Jan 26, 2018
    Penetanguishene Ontario Canada
    1989 SeaRay Sundancer 268 454 Bravo
    454 Mercruiser bravo drive
    A sales tax on any used item ought to be illegal in any state or country because the tax was already collected on the sale when it was new.
    It's the same crap here in Canada where the greedy bastards collect taxes each time a car or boat change hands. Some vehicles end up having been taxed greater amounts in thier lifetime than the original new cost.
    CROOKS
     
    Kwik likes this.
  13. SKybolt

    SKybolt Member

    313
    Nov 11, 2014
    Kent Narrows, MD
    1988 460 EC Sea Ray. w/12.5K Westerbeke Genset.
    Twin 6v92TA Low profile's (475hp) with Alison Gears.
    so I haven't actually seen this spelled out only touched on. I am going through close to the same thing. My boat is documented in my previous state of NY and I now reside in MD with my boat. When I spoke directly with the USCG they said the hailing port must be either where the owner resides or the boat is berthed. That said I applied for the hailing port change to the document since the city state must be on the transom. That process has taken almost seven months.

    The tax thing is one big PITA. MD requires you to get the tax sticker or register your vessel if it is in state waters for more than 90 days.

    Page 2 top left:
    https://dnr.maryland.gov/boating/Documents/recreationvessels.pdf
     
  14. b_arrington

    b_arrington Well-Known Member GOLD Sponsor

    Feb 21, 2007
    Setauket, NY
    2018 Back Cove 34
    Cummins QSB 6.7 480
    Holy crap. They want 5% of the value of a boat you already own, up to $15k! I would easily hit the max on my boat. I really hope that’s not an annual fee. Paying $15k every year just to own the boat in MD would be enough to make me get out of boating.
     
  15. Henry Boyd

    Henry Boyd Well-Known Member GOLD Sponsor

    Apr 24, 2007
    Newburyport, on the peaceful and serene Merrimack
    ‘09 Sabre 38 Hardtop Express “Serenity”
    Volvo D6 w/IPS450 Pods
    Although it’s called an excise tax, it reads like a one time sales tax. The process for documented vessels brought into Maryland is a little clearer showing that it is levied when the boat is imported.

    5% isn’t bad we paid 6.5% on Serenity this spring as a sales tax. We do have an excise tax but it is based on an arbitrary value formula: x feet long and y years old = “value” The tax is then a percentage times the excise value. Our 2020 excise tax is less than $120.00 and had the boat been as old as the 280, the two excise taxes would have nearly been equal.
     
  16. b_arrington

    b_arrington Well-Known Member GOLD Sponsor

    Feb 21, 2007
    Setauket, NY
    2018 Back Cove 34
    Cummins QSB 6.7 480
    Perhaps I’m just not used to this type of tax. In New York you don’t pay tax on property you already own if you bring it into the state

    Most NY taxes are on real property, income, or sales tax. NYS sure did get me for the sales tax on the new Jennifer B. I had to pay the upper limit of $19.8k. Luckily NY has a sales cap tax for boats or it would have been a lot more.
     
  17. FootballFan

    FootballFan Well-Known Member

    Jun 20, 2012
    Florida
    Marquis 59
    MTU Series 60
    Sounds similar to FL. One time payment if you are keeping the boat in waters of that state. Nothing to do with whether your boat is documented or not.

    Some states have reciprocal, I know FL and MD has an agreement. If you paid the tax in FL you do not have to pay again if you are in MD over the allotted time period for transient.
     

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