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Old 15-02-2017, 19:26   #1
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Somehow an even more boring thread than the last! Insurance...

I am struggling with search function here and other forums because I get so many results it has become very confusing.

I am really curious about insurance and I am hoping for a simple answer.

Is there required insurance to operate in U.S coastal or inland waters? like liability minimums for vehicles to protect others from me and my boat. (I know marinas require it)

Do most people here on the west coast use Boat US for liability and tow?

when I am looking at a boat to purchase is there a database courthouse record to check the hull number against for information about insurance, registration, liens, and whether or not the guy selling it actually owns it?

Thanks again!
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Old 15-02-2017, 19:33   #2
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Re: Somehow an even more boring thread than the last! Insurance...

1) insurance is not required in the waters for the west coast. There may be specific lakes or private boat launches that require it, though. Also most marinas and boat yards require it.

2) I wouldn't say that "most" use boatus, at least in my experience from conversations at the dock. I did use them though when I had a boat in the sf bay.

3) there are documentation companies that do lien checks on boats for purchases. Somebody else will have to comment on if these are possible or easy to perform yourself.
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Old 15-02-2017, 19:49   #3
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Re: Somehow an even more boring thread than the last! Insurance...

You don't need insurance to sail on the bay or ocean, but Marina's will want at least liability insurance to keep a boat at the marina.
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Old 15-02-2017, 20:48   #4
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Re: Somehow an even more boring thread than the last! Insurance...

For liability only, many people just get it added to their homeowner's policy.

As far as ownership, the seller should be able to give you a legal title. You can check with the entity that issued the title to see if it has any "brands" on it. Any "bill of sale," no-title transaction is strictly a gamble, like anything else on craigslist. I did buy a cheap CL boat that way once, and had to have a state trooper inspect it and issue a new HIN. I think he said there was some sort of database they could search. He uploaded a description of the boat and waited a couple of weeks before OKing a title. He also said that he'd never heard of any LEO in my state ever "pulling over" a sailboat. They're more likely to get involved with abandoned wrecks that someone has to take the blame for. He also showed me an impound lot with several power boats that they'd managed to track back to thefts in distant parts of the country. Which seems pretty impressive for a BFE backwater like this.
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Old 16-02-2017, 06:43   #5
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Re: Somehow an even more boring thread than the last! Insurance...

if you have any plans for cruising out of usa, you will want insurance provided specifically for those areas--mexico, for example has laws mandating uuse of insurance comopanies with feet in mexico---boat us and such others do NOT have such --and are not acknowledged in mexico.
research well. buy what you NEED.
good luck.
i have used mariners group since 2012.
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Old 16-02-2017, 06:53   #6
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Re: Somehow an even more boring thread than the last! Insurance...

If it is state registered (i.e., NOT USCG registered) then the "pink slip" just like a car is the title. I don't know how to check for liens. If the boat is being financed, the lender would most likely do that check as part of the deal.
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Old 16-02-2017, 10:30   #7
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Re: Somehow an even more boring thread than the last! Insurance...

Home owner policies may only cover boats at the home Get ones that cover the location where you will be. Insurance is not requires to run the boat but many locations demand it. Question how big a loss do you want to finance/ I am good hands employee I'm biased
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Old 16-02-2017, 11:27   #8
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Re: Somehow an even more boring thread than the last! Insurance...

When coastal sailing and marina or mooring hopping in the U.S. west coat, how often does the harbor master check:

-your ID passport etc
-your vessel registration --- matches your ID
-your up to date insurance certificate
-vessel seaworthy example lights, anchor light, acceptable marine head etc?

I assume the coast guard or local harbor patrol/naval contingent, police at a dock will check all this during a routine safety stop and boarding also?

and Oh gawd... do you need all this crap onboard the dinghy too?!!!
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Old 16-02-2017, 13:17   #9
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Re: Somehow an even more boring thread than the last! Insurance...

Insurance agents, bank reps, state employees, LEO all have different points of view regarding licensing , insurance, and titling according to their agenda.
Many states have different rules for each agency.. And i have found that there are different interpretations of the rules. If your insurance agent didnt ask a certain question that doesnt mean the question isn't pertinent. Read the fine print. Some state agencies have rules that dont bend. Others know ways to circumvent rules go get you on your way . And then you have lazy , or incompetent, or apathetic agents and representatives in the mix . Yet still there are those to go the extra mile for you..
That being said, do your homework. Ask around. Call for info before making redundant trips to the departments.
I can tell you of people who would swear up and down that im kieing about how I obtained registration in certain states. Well heres my paperwork!
Its a crapshoot!.
In Alabama no license required for boat trailers. A bill of sale is sufficient as title .
In Wisconsin i can title a home made trailer thru the mail and register an abandoned boat without trouble.
There will be thise whom disagree , oh well !
Good luck in your quest !
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