NY State Boating FAQ's
Frequently Asked Questions
Does my boat require a registration?
The law requires you to register any boat that is motor-driven and is operated on public waterways in NYS. The boat requires a registration even if the motor is not the primary source of propulsion. If you operate the boat in NYS, you must register the boat with the DMV. After you register your boat, you receive a registration certificate that indicates the registration number assigned to your boat and a set of registration stickers.
You must paint or attach the registration number to each side of the bow of the boat. The characters must be:
block letters not less than three inches high,
a color different from the hull and easy to see,
legible from 100 ft. away during the daylight hours,
the only number on the front half of your boat.
You cannot transfer the registration number to another boat.
The registration sticker shows the month and the year that the registration expires. Attach each sticker in line with the registration numbers on each side of the hull, and three inches toward the stern of the boat.
What if my boat is documented by the US Coast Guard?
You must register the boat in NYS if:
the boat is not used for commercial purposes in NYS, and
the boat will be used on public waterways in NYS for 90 or more consecutive days.
If you boat was documented by US Coast Guard, you do not receive a NYS registration number. You receive NYS registration stickers only. Attach the stickers in the position where the registration numbers are normally located.
How do I get a hull identification number (HIN)?
If you have a boat that does not have a hull identification number (HIN), you must get one before you can register the boat if:
you made the boat
you got a boat that was manufactured after November 1, 1972.
You can get an application form from the DMV or from the NYS Office of Parks, Recreation and Historic Preservation (OPRHP). Send the completed form to the OPRHP. The OPRHP arranges your boat inspection for you.
Do boats require title certificates?
The DMV issues title certificates for boats that are:
model year 1987 and newer,at least 14 ft. long, and
registered in New York State.
The title certificate is used for proof of ownership for these boats instead of the registration. Title certificates are not issued for boats that do not match the description above or for boats registered with the Coast Guard. For a boat that does not receive a title certificate, the transferable registration is proof of ownership.
How do I register my boat?
To register your boat, bring the following items to a DMV office:
Complete form MV-82-B (Boat Registration / Title Application).
Complete form DTF-802 (Statement of Transaction for Sales Tax) or proof of exemption or tax paid. See the sales tax information for additional information. The requirements and forms for boats are the same as those for motor vehicles.
The proof of ownership listed in the boat registration requirements document.
Proof of identity and date of birth.
Cash, check or credit card for the fee.
Remember that if you have a boat trailer you must register the trailer. See the instructions to register a vehicle.
What is the cost of a boat registration?
Boat registrations are issued for three years. There is a registration fee and a surcharge for boating safety. The fees and surcharges are calculated from the length of the boat as follows:
Less than 16 feet - $18.00 registration fee and $3.00 surcharge ($21.00 total).
16 feet to less than 26 feet - $36.00 registration fee and $10.00 surcharge ($46.00 total).
25 feet or longer - $60.00 registration fee and $15.00 surcharge ($75.00 total).
How do I renew my boat registration?
You cannot renew a boat registration on-line. Use your renewal notice to renew by mail. If you do not have a renewal notice, apply for the renewal with form MV-82B or visit your local DMV office.
Is it against the law to operate a boat under the influence of drugs or alcohol?
Yes. New York State has laws that prohibit the operation of a boat while under the influence of drugs or alcohol. More information is available from the NYS Office of Parks, Recreation and Historic Preservation. On April 1, 1999, the Zero Tolerance Law for vessel operators became effective.
How can I find more information about boating laws and boating safety?
The New York State Boater's Guide is available from the DMV, the NYS Office of Parks, Recreation and Historic Preservation, or the NYS Canal Corporation. This handbook contains information about registration, operation and safety. Go to the NYS Office of Parks, Recreation and Historic Preservation web site to get information about the operation of a vessel or recreational vehicle in NYS.
Babylon Boat & Yacht Sales Inc.
122 Wagstaff Lane|
West Islip, NY 11795, United States