What Maritime Documents do I Need?

Of all of the questions that we get asked, this might be the most common. Knowing what to do with your vessel doesn’t necessarily correspond to knowing what to do with your maritime document. Being the best helmsman or vessel owner does not mean that you will automatically understand vessel documentation. That’s alright, though, and ultimately why we are here. Below, we’ll go over some questions we get often and what boat documentation forms they correspond with.

Question 1: Adding a Spouse

“I want to add my spouse to the vessel documentation. What form do I use for that?” The simple answer here is the “Transfer/Exchange” form. This one allows you to add a spouse, or even remove one from the documentation if necessary. Many of our customers use these forms when they’re selling their vessel or transferring it to some other owner such as a company or trust. Now one thing to keep in mind about these forms is that if there is a mortgage on the vessel, it has to be satisfied before you can implement this form. The only exception is if the lender gives their permission for you to do so.

Question 2: My Vessel Was Built Abroad

“I’ve been raring to go with my commercial passenger vessel business, the only problem is, the best vessel I could swing isn’t built in America. Is there a way around this?” The answer is yes. The MARAD Small Vessel Waiver might be the right form of documentation for you. This one allows certain vessels built outside of the United States to be able to conduct limited commercial passenger operations in the United States. The keyword here is “limited.” As with everything else, if you have any questions, we recommend that you give us a call.

Question 3: I Lost My Maritime Document

“Hey, I can’t seem to find my initial registration. I’m all paid up, all good to go. I can just print up a new one, right? Or mail in for a copy?” Unfortunately, that’s not the case. If you lose or somehow damage your documentation, you actually need to get a replacement. A photocopy or something like that won’t actually be valid; you have to get the real thing itself. Also important to keep in mind about this: this is not the same thing as a “renewal.” All it is is another copy of the registration you have. So, even if you do get this form, your renewal date isn’t going to change. The only way to renew your registration is to go through that process. This is just for replacements alone.

The Maritime Documentation Center

We know that you have many choices when it comes to where you get your vessel documentation. That’s why we make sure that our site has every maritime document for you to choose from at your convenience. No matter what kind of documentation you need for your vessel, you can find it at our site. Still unsure of what’s the right documentation for you case? Simply call us at (800) 535-8570.