What is vessel registration

Vessel registration is a legal process and involves applying for registration to the relevant maritime registry in your chosen flag state. Owners will be required to notify the maritime registry of their ownership status of a vessel, and state their desire to have the vessel registered under that flag. Registering your yacht or ship is a vital step that must be made prior to the utilization of your vessel, otherwise it is subject to a number of legal issues and will not be protected from any problems or failures.

Importance of vessel registration

Once you have purchased your vessel, you are legally obliged to register it under your selected flag state as a means to show you are the legal owner of the vessel and to enable the applicable maritime laws to protect it. Vessel registration ensures your yacht or ship will be registered as a legal entity.

Registering your marine vessel is very important as it ultimately provides recognition of ownership, both when the vessel is navigating international waters and while docked. It is also necessary to register the boat prior to seeking marine insurance. In order to safely and legally use your vessel you will need to obtain the most suitable marine insurance policy, however, this can only be achieved after the registration process is complete.

The process of vessel registration will vary according to the flag state selected, as each jurisdiction will typically apply their own procedures and prerequisites. Most jurisdictions will require the vessel owner to provide a detailed outline and specifications of the vessel, as well as all details of the owner and all individuals related to the vessel.

It should be noted that the registration fee and time will also vary from one flag state to another, and this should be considered carefully when selecting the flag state.

Upon completion and acceptance of the application, your vessel is automatically subject to the maritime laws of the jurisdiction you are licensed under.

When deciding to register your vessel, it is advised that you enlist the professional services of a consultancy firm that are experienced in international yacht registration processes and laws. There are various flag states to select from and it is necessary to be aware of all the benefits and obligations each jurisdiction will impose on the vessel owner, prior to initiating the vessel registration process.