US Coast Guard Boat Requirements for Business, Pleasure, and Documentation

Do you remember the feeling of being in school and discovering that, no, you didn’t have your homework? Hopefully, this never happened to you, but it happened to some of us. That feeling can come back (and even worse) if you should get caught on your vessel without the proper documentation. Of course, the stakes are much higher now than a poor grade: fines and more. To stay in compliance with US Coast Guard boat requirements, we’ve made it possible to get all of the forms that you need all in one place. If you have any questions, we’re always more than glad to answer them. 

“Can I Use My Coastwise Trade Vessel for Recreation?” 

Yes. If you have a documented vessel that’s used in coastwise trade, or that has a Fishery endorsement, then you can absolutely use it for recreation. After all, it’s your vessel. Maybe you have a day off from work, or perhaps you want to reward those who have stood by you for so long. You don’t need to have a “Recreation” endorsement to be able to take your vessel out for some much-needed recreational activities. However, this doesn’t work in reverse. You can’t use your Recreation-endorsed vessel in coastwise trade, or anything like that. Any vessel can be used for recreation, but Recreation-endorsed vessels can only be used for recreation. 

“My Certificate of Documentation Was Torn. It’s Still Good, Right?” 

You want to have this form of documentation on your vessel, but you want to protect it, too. Storing it in a safe place where it won’t be damaged is always the best course of action. Unfortunately, if it does become damaged, then you need to buy a replacement. For any number of reasons, you can’t just use one that’s been damaged too much or one that’s lost. Just because your vessel documentation is “good” doesn’t mean that it’s “valid” if you lose the physical, literal certificate. If you have any questions about this (or really, anything else) we can answer them. 

“Unfortunately, my Documentation Expired. Don’t I Just Have to Renew?” 

In this case, no. You can’t just “renew” it. Specifically, you can’t do so through the “Renewal” link on our site. However, what you can do is to go to “Reinstatement.” There, you can go through the process of reinstating your vessel documentation. Once it’s expired, it’s gone. It can’t be renewed. After the expiration date has passed, to get your documentation valid again, you have to go through “reinstatement.” 

Meet U.S. Coast Guard Boat Requirements Easily 

At first glance, these requirements can seem like they’re too complex and complicated to be able to be in compliance with them. However, here at the Maritime Documentation Center, we make it easy. You can find all of the forms you need at our site and fill them out quickly. Should there be any questions or even if you want clarification on any topics, you can reach us at (800) 535-8570.