Boat Registration and Licenses in New York

New York Boat Title, Registration, & Licenses

The New York Department of Motor Vehicles (DMV) handles the registration and titling for all boats.

Keep scrolling for information on titling and/or registering a vessel AND the qualifications needed to operate boats on NY waters.

NY Vessels to Title & Register

In New York, you must register any boat that is partially OR wholly motor-driven and used on the state's public waterways. Vessels exempt from registration include:

  • Non-motorized vessels, like kayaks and canoes.
  • Lifeboats.
  • Any boat registered out-of-state and not used in New York for more than 90 consecutive days.
  • Commercial boats with U.S. or foreign documentation.
  • Watercraft racing in a competition.

The NY DMV only issues titles for motorboats that meet ALL of the following criteria:

  • Manufactured in 1987 or more recent.
  • Have a length of at least 14 ft.
  • Registered in New York.

If you're not positive about whether your boat requires a title and/or registration, call the Department of Motor Vehicles at (518) 486-9786 for clarification.

Title & Register Your Boat in NY

To register and/or title your boat, with the New York Department of Motor Vehicles, gather the following:

If you're making an application to title and register OR only register your watercraft, submit the required items above in person at your local DMV office branch.

If you're applying for a title ONLY, you will need to mail the appropriate items above to:

  • NYS Department of Motor Vehicles
  • Title Bureau
  • 6 Empire State Plaza
  • Albany, NY 12228

Your New York vessel registration will be valid for 3 years.

New York Boat Title & Registration Fees

The costs associated with titling and registering your boat with the NY Department of Motor Vehicles are as follows:

  • Initial and renewal vessel registration (calculated by the length of your boat):
    • Less than 16 feet: $22.50.
    • 16 ft to 26 ft: $45.
    • 26 ft or longer: $75.
  • Boat title: $50.
  • Lien fee: $5 per lien.
  • Replacement fees:
    • Registration (card or sticker): $2.
    • Title: $20.
  • NY sales tax: 8.875% of the vessel's sale price.

Renew Your NY Boat Registration

Boat registrations are valid for 3 years. The New York DMV will send you a renewal notice in the mail before your vessel's expiration date.

You can renew your boat registration:

NOTE: If you lost or did not receive a renewal notice, you can submit a completed a Boat Registration/Title Application (Form MV-82B) in its place.

Replace Your Vessel Title & Registration

If you need another copy of your NY boat title and/or registration, you will need to submit the applicable items below at your local Department of Motor Vehicles agency:

New York Boater Safety Courses

The New York State Office of Parks, Recreation and Historic Preservation outlines the qualifications needed to operate watercraft in NY.
Starting in 2020, NY began phasing in Brianna's Law, which requires boat operators to complete a boater education course and receive a Boating Safety Certificate. Those required to take the safety course is based on the year they were born:

  • Beginning in 2024, anyone born on or after January 1, 1978.
  • Beginning in 2025, ALL boat operators will be required to complete a boat safety course.
  • To operate personal watercraft you must complete a boating education course AND be at least 14 years old.

You can fulfill the boating education requirement by taking a course:

  • Online.
  • In the classroom.

For a complete list of approved boater education providers, jump over to the New York State Office of Parks, Recreation and Historic Preservation's webpage on safe boating classes.


Statement of Transaction
Submit this form to the New York Department of Taxation and Finance if a vehicle was sold OR gifted without collecting sales tax.
Notice of Lien
Notify the NY Department of Motor Vehicles of lien(s) placed on a car.
Boat Registration/Title Application
Application for New York boat title AND/OR registration (original, replacement, renewal, corrected).
Application for a Duplicate Title
Use this form to request a duplicate AND/OR corrected vehicle title from the NY Department of Motor Vehicles.
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