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Old 05-10-2018, 11:04   #1
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Registering a Vessel as British in the US

Need Advice… US green card holder (Brit) looking at a coast guard registered vessel. I was previously under the impression that I would have to deregister the boat and register it under a state. However I have just been told that it may be easier to register it as a foreign vessel i.e. British. Does anyone have experience with this? I like the boat but I don’t like excessive read tape i.e. dealing across continents with silly questions and extra costs. This will be my first real boat…
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Old 05-10-2018, 12:02   #2
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pirate Re: Registering a Vessel as British in the US

All you need is a UK address and you can register it SSR..
No problems for the boat as its a US citizen.
Did this with a Hunter 37c I bought in Oriental NC.
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Old 05-10-2018, 13:53   #3
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Re: Registering a Vessel as British in the US

Steven-
A friend of mine, in the US long term under a diplomatic visa, was in the same situation. He simply put a state registration on the boat, in the same state where he was residing. Perfectly legal and simple. Now, if he'd planned on taking the boat out of the country--then it would have needed to be flagged, presumably in his home country. If you need to do that, then you'll also need to apply for a US cruising permit, which is issued for a period of one year, and can be refused for multiple reasons. And after that one year your boat must be proven to be out of US waters for something like two weeks, at which point you are allowed to apply for another permit--which again, usually will be issued but does not have to be.
If you're just hopping over to the Bahamas, I'm told they'll accept state registrations without any problem, they're just interested in tourist dollars and stolen boats.
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Old 05-10-2018, 14:32   #4
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Re: Registering a Vessel as British in the US

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Steven-
A friend of mine, in the US long term under a diplomatic visa, was in the same situation. He simply put a state registration on the boat, in the same state where he was residing. Perfectly legal and simple. Now, if he'd planned on taking the boat out of the country--then it would have needed to be flagged, presumably in his home country. If you need to do that, then you'll also need to apply for a US cruising permit, which is issued for a period of one year, and can be refused for multiple reasons. And after that one year your boat must be proven to be out of US waters for something like two weeks, at which point you are allowed to apply for another permit--which again, usually will be issued but does not have to be.
If you're just hopping over to the Bahamas, I'm told they'll accept state registrations without any problem, they're just interested in tourist dollars and stolen boats.
I think if you have a green card (US resident)as the OP is, you do not have to leave the US to get another cruising permit. This is the only exception.
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Old 05-10-2018, 15:07   #5
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Re: Registering a Vessel as British in the US

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All you need is a UK address and you can register it SSR..
No problems for the boat as its a US citizen.
Did this with a Hunter 37c I bought in Oriental NC.
What’s SSR?
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Old 05-10-2018, 16:00   #6
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Re: Registering a Vessel as British in the US

Small Ships Registry. It’s the UK equivalent to USCG documentation but for smaller vessels. Including most of ours on this forum. More or less.

And I would be very careful about a non us flagged vessel in the USA and the reporting and time limitation requirements.

An admiralty lawyer might be a good person to ask.
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Old 05-10-2018, 16:21   #7
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Small Ships Registry. It’s the UK equivalent to USCG documentation but for smaller vessels. Including most of ours on this forum. More or less.

And I would be very careful about a non us flagged vessel in the USA and the reporting and time limitation requirements.

An admiralty lawyer might be a good person to ask.
The lady at the Morehead Customs office where I cleared my USA built UK flagged boat and myself out informed me a US built boat stayed US and could stay.. go and come at will.. no matter the flag.. the owner however was another matter..
Boat or Human matters not.. its where your first registered..
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Old 05-10-2018, 16:34   #8
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Re: Registering a Vessel as British in the US

Does Canadian count as US built? Probably a stupid question...
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Old 05-10-2018, 16:35   #9
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Re: Registering a Vessel as British in the US

Can anyone recommend a place I may find the information with out losing an arm and a leg?
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Old 05-10-2018, 17:08   #10
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Re: Registering a Vessel as British in the US

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Can anyone recommend a place I may find the information with out losing an arm and a leg?
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Old 06-10-2018, 17:19   #11
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Re: Registering a Vessel as British in the US

Hello Brit:

Only US citizens [and US corporations / LLCs] can have their boats provided USCG documentation so you can't transfer the titling via the USCG method.

If you intend to keep the boat in one of the states then you can have it titled by the state's titling agency, typically the department of motor vehicles.
And you can register the boat in the same state that you are keeping it.

Or I suspect that you could register the company in your country's small ship registry and then obtain a use permit from the state in which waters your boat resides for cruising as a visiting foreign boat for one year.

If you intend to keep the boat in a state for more than one year, titling and registering in that state is likely the easiest.
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Old 06-10-2018, 18:16   #12
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Re: Registering a Vessel as British in the US

Just do UK SSR as some other people suggested. You can do it all over the internet. I would recommend paying with a UK-based credit/debit card, and of course a UK address for the papers. Because "you have to reside 180 days in the UK" to be eligible. But, if you follow this two rules, you will get your SSR, no questions asked.
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Old 06-10-2018, 18:23   #13
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Re: Registering a Vessel as British in the US

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Just do UK SSR as some other people suggested. You can do it all over the internet. I would recommend paying with a UK-based credit/debit card, and of course a UK address for the papers. Because "you have to reside 180 days in the UK" to be eligible. But, if you follow this two rules, you will get your SSR, no questions asked.
Sure you can do it easy .... problems happen when you want to move a foreign flagged boat and can only do that with a "Permission to Proceed" which will have to be renewed with a personal visit to US Customs every time you move the boat or you can apply for a "Cruising License" which requires you to phone customs every time you stop the boat. and then you have to take it out of the country for two weeks when that license expires before they'll give you another one .... Yeah, it's easy.
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Old 06-10-2018, 18:28   #14
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Re: Registering a Vessel as British in the US

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Or I suspect that you could register the company in your country's small ship registry and then obtain a use permit from the state in which waters your boat resides for cruising as a visiting foreign boat for one year.
No ... "Permission to Proceed" and "Cruising Licenses" come from Federal jurisdiction. i.e. CBP. States have nothing to do with it.
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Old 06-10-2018, 21:01   #15
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Re: Registering a Vessel as British in the US

I am a US citizen. The boat has been registered in the Isle of Man. Great service and always with a smile.
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