New Hampshire 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 New Hampshire. 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.
||State of New
Division of Motor Vehicles
Boat Registration Website
Please contribute any experience or knowledge you may have about registering a boat in
New Hampshire ....
||New Hampshire boat registrations are administered by the Division of
Motor Vehicles in Concord. New Hampshire is a registration only state and does not
issue titles. This state
does not issue registrations or titles on outboard motors. Boat trailer
registration is required in New Hampshire and titlessare required
for those weighing over 3,000 lbs.are required
for those weighing over 3,000 lbs.
Sales and use
tax do not apply to boat transactions.
approximately 94,810 boats registered in the State
of New Hampshire. This accounts for 0.8% of all nationwide
||Boat registration numbers in New Hampshire begin with an "NH" 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 Marine Police Division for a hull
number assignment. State assigned hull numbers prefixed with
the letters "ALZ" are available for home made boats and those without factory
designations. The boat must
be inspected by a law enforcement official if there is a
discrepancy in the hull identification number.
Unless otherwise exempted, all motorboats of any size, and sailboats or sailboards
12 feet in length or longer must be registered in New Hampshire. USCG documented
vessels are also subject to registration in New Hampshire. Exceptions are sailboats
and sailboards under 12 feet in length, other small, non-motorized vessels such as
canoes and kayaks.
does not have provisions for bonded or conditional boat
registrations where sufficient proof of ownership is not otherwise available. Under
these circumstances it will be necessary to petition a court of local jurisdiction
for an award of ownership.
ownership, abandonments, destructions, and thefts of registered boats must be
reported within 15 days.
Ownership and Liens
||New Hampshire is a registration only state and does not issue boat
titles. Registration certificates may however serve as quasi-proof of ownership
unless the vessel is USCG documented. Security interests non-titled and
non-documented boats are therefore recorded through Uniform Commercial Code filings.
Tax liens are sometimes flagged in the state's registration database, recorded as
UCC 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 USCG documented.
If the vessel is USCG documented, a security interest is 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.
||Boat registration records in New Hampshire are maintained by the
Division of Motor Vehicles. This agency does not facilitate online searches for the general public but
registration information may be obtained by submitting a boat record request form.
This is the same as used for vehicles. However you must be the owner or a qualified
requester. It is also reported that the DMV will provide telephone verifications on
registration certificates in hand..
Hampshire is a registration only state and does
not issue boat titles. Security interests in non-documented boats are accordingly filed with the Secretary of State as Uniform Commercial Code
recordings. Online UCC searches are available from their web site or by using 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
Non-recorded maritime liens may also be a factor when conducting boat title research
in New Hampshire. 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 documented
Boat Record Request
Public Record Vendors
Vessel Documentation Center
Business Entity Search
New Hampshire Division of Motor Vehicles