boat registration - Coast Guard vessel documentation - yacht registry

Georgia Boat Registration Summary

Georgia boat registration summary is a free resource designed to inform the boating public about registration requirements, recording methods, and title search guidelines for the State of Georgia. The data is maintained as an open wiki forum where readers are encouraged to participate by sharing knowledge and experiences with this particular state. Simply click on the "Wiki-Share" link to contribute further details or suggest a revision.

The information presented here is subject to change and should be confirmed with the respective state agency.
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Boat Registration Agency Georgia Boat RegistrationState of Georgia
Department of Natural Resources
Wildlife Resources Division

Boat Registration Website
Please contribute any experience or knowledge you may have about registering a boat in Georgia ....  Wiki-Share
Registration Overview Georgia boat registrations are administered by the Department of Natural Resources in Atlanta. Georgia is a registration only state and does not issue boat titles. Titling and registration is not required in Georgia for outboard boat motors. Boat trailers are registered in Georgia but not titled. Sales tax applies on boat transactions and there is a yearly personal property tax.
There are approximately 338,210 boats registered in the State of Georgia. This accounts for 2.8% of all nationwide registrations.
Marking Requirements Boat registration numbers in Georgia begin with a "GA" designation which is followed by four numbers and then two letters. These must be displayed on all non-documented boats along with registration sticker tabs.
Coast Guard documented vessels may not display the state registration numbers. However they must display the state registration tabs, an owner designated vessel name, and a hailing port. An official documentation number must also be affixed to a visible interior location in the hull itself or an integral part of the hull.
All vessels manufactured after 1972 are required to have a 12 digit hull identification number affixed to the vessel by the manufacturer. Owners with older boats may apply with the Department of Natural Resources for a hull number assignment. State assigned hull numbers prefixed with the letters "GAZ" are available for home made boats and those without factory designations. Hull number inspections are required from a local law enforcement agency whenever there is a discrepancy.
Registration Requirements Boat registration in Georgia is required on all watercraft except sailboats under 12 feet in length, canoes, kayaks, rowboats and rubber rafts that have no mechanical propulsion (i.e., are paddled, poled, oared or windblown), boats operated exclusively on private ponds or lake. Registration is also required for Coast Guard documented vessels. The transfer, abandonment, theft, or destruction of a Georgia registered boat must be reported to the Wildlife Resources Division within 15 days. Georgia has provisions for removal of abandoned boats, however there are no specific procedures for registration.
Georgia does not issue boat titles, this is a registration only state.
Ownership and Liens Georgia does not issue boat titles therefore security interests in non-documented boats are recorded through Uniform Commercial Code filings. Tax liens are sometimes flagged in the state's registration database, recorded as Uniform Commercial Code filings, shown on state revenue records, or filed with a county clerk's office. There are no provisions for recording mechanic's liens or other non-secured claims against registered boats which are not documented.
If the vessel is USCG documented, a security interest may be perfected by filing a preferred vessel mortgage. These are recorded with the National Vessel Documentation Center with the earliest submissions taking priority. Other lien claims can be filed in the same manner although these function as notifications only. All such filings are indexed on the vessel's underlying abstract of title.
Title Searches Boat registration records in Georgia are administered by the Department of Natural Resources. Individual boat records can be obtained through the DNA's online renewal system in the owner's name. However, this will require the owner's date of birth along with their personal identifier such as the last four digits of a social security number or DNA identification number. A complete boat record database is also available for download to the general public. This is a free service and offers all records by county or the entire state. The DNA will also check their records by telephone and verify a registration if you have the certificate in hand. Record print-outs are otherwise available to non-owners, but  it will be necessary to send a written boat record request form.
Georgia is a registration only state and does not issue boat titles. Security interests are accordingly filed with the Superior Court Clerk's Office as Uniform Commercial Code filings. Record searches are available online or from a public record vendor.
State and Federal tax liens on boats are not always recorded in a consistent manner and are therefore difficult to identify. They may show up as a red flag on state registration records, as UCC filings, in state revenue records, in a county clerks records, or on a vessel's abstract of title for documented boats. Given these disparities, it may be worth obtaining the services of a public record vendor that has access to a broad range of personal property lien recordings.
Ownership, mortgage, and lien search recordings for USCG documented vessels can be obtained by ordering an abstract of title and a copy of the certificate of documentation from the National Vessel Documentation Center. However, these are encoded and can be difficult to interpret, especially on older vessels with numerous recordings. It may be worthwhile to contact a professional vessel documentation company for assistance in this regard.
Non-recorded maritime liens may also be a factor when conducting boat title research in Georgia. These include liabilities for items such as services, equipment, fuel, storage, parts, supplies, and damages which can become attached to the boat itself regardless of ownership. One of the most useful tools for doing this kind of research is our premier boat history search database. It is a gathering of eight nationwide databases into a single interface which can be searched by numerous criteria. These include records for stolen boats, marine lien claims, boating accidents, pollution incidents, auctioned boats, factory recalls, and boat manufacturers.
Resources Boat History Search Database
Boat Record Request Form
Boat Record Search - Individual Record Search
Boat Record Database - State or county database downloads.
UCC Search
Public Record Vendors
Business Entity Search
Vessel Documentation Companies
Wiki Contributors Georgia Department of Natural Resources


Visit our database page for the nation's premier boat history report with a full compliment of title search resources. Includes eight maritime databases all rolled into one convenient interface. A must-have service for any prospective buyer, marine lender, or maritime professional.


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