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Boat Registration and Licenses in Nebraska

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Boat registration and titles are issued by the county treasurer offices of the Nebraska Department of Motor Vehicles (DMV).

Keep reading this page to learn about titling and registering watercraft with the DMV as well as the qualifications needed to operate a boat on Nebraska state waters.

Boats Requiring NE Title & Registration

By law, all motorized boats in Nebraska built:

  • AFTER November 1, 1972 are required to have a valid hull identification number (HIN).
  • AFTER November 1, 1972 are required to be titled with the DMV, EXCEPT boats owned by an entity of the United States government OR Nebraska state government.

If your boat doesn't have a valid HIN and is required to have one, you'll need to apply for an assigned ID number.To learn about titling your vessel (and exceptions to the rule), continue reading below.

All boats propelled by a mechanical device that's powered by a gas, diesel, or electric motor, must be registered with the NE Department of Motor Vehicles, with the following exemptions:

  • Vessels documented with the U.S. Coast Guard.
  • Vessels owned by any branch of government.
  • Motorboats registered in another state and kept in Nebraska no more than 60 days.
  • Motorboats competing in Nebraska-approved races or time trials, 48 hours prior to or after the competition.

If you aren't sure whether your boat requires titling and registration, contact your local DMV office for clarification.

NE Boat Title & Registration Procedures

To title your vessel, provide the following items at the NE county treasurer's office in the county where your boat will be located:

To register your boat with the Nebraska DMV, you'll need to bring the following items to county treasurer's office in the county where your vessel primarily reside:

  • A proof of ownership document for:
    • New boats: Manufacturer's Statement of Origin.
    • Used boats: Properly assigned title OR bill of sale (if the boat does not require a title).
  • Documentation regarding Nebraska sales and use tax for:
    • New vessels: A Sales and Use Tax Statement for Motorboat Sales (Form 6MB), which the boat dealer will give to you.
    • Used vessels: A bill of sale with the boat's purchase price.
  • The necessary vessel registration fees.

Depending on the county where you're registering your boat, you may be required to provide additional registration documents; please contact your local county treasurer's office for details.

NE Vessel Title & Registration Fees

The fees required to title and register watercraft with the Nebraska Department of Motor Vehicles are as follows:

  • Original/renewal boat registration (depends on the length of your boat):
    • Class 1 (less than 16 ft AND all canoes): $23.
    • Class 2 (16 ft to 25 ft): $46.
    • Class 3 (26 ft to 39 ft): $67.50.
    • Class 4 (40 ft or longer): $115.
    • Class 5 (demo permits for dealers or manufacturers): $46.
  • Registration issuing fee (in addition to original, renewal, and replacement registration fees): $4.
  • Aquatic Invasive Species Stamp (paid in addition to original/renewal registration fees): $5.
  • Boat title: $10.
    • Lien recording fee: $7.
  • Replacement:
    • Vessel registration: $5.
    • Vessel title: $14.
  • Sales and use tax:

Renew & Replace Boat Registrations & Titles

Boat registrations in Nebraska are valid for 3 years and expire December 31st of the 3rd year.

You can renew your vessel's registration with the NE Department of Motor Vehicles by providing information about your boat AND the necessary renewal fees:

Replace a Lost Registration or Title

If your Nebraska boat registration or title certificate is lost or damaged, request a replacement by providing the items below at your county treasurer's office:

Nebraska Boater Safety Courses

Anyone born after December 31, 1985 who wishes to operate a motorboat OR personal watercraft in Nebraska must:

  • Be at least 14 years old.
    AND
  • Have completed a state-approved NE boating safety course.

You can fulfill Nebraska's boating safety education requirement:

NOTE: If you're a visitor from out-of-state and have received safety course certification in your home state approved by the National Association of State Boating Law Administrators (NASBLA), you can use your out-of-state certification to operate a boat in Nebraska.

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