Connecticut Boat Bill of Sale Form


A Connecticut boat bill of sale form signifies that a buyer and seller settled on the terms of an agreement. It conveys their willingness to carry out the trade in the listed manner and implies they determined a fair price. By signing, the buyer binds themselves to the amount listed on the bill of sale. Similarly, the seller agrees to give up the keys and ownership of the boat. As a result, the buyer becomes the rightful “new owner” and the seller becomes the “previous owner.”

What is a Connecticut Vessel Bill of Sale?

A Connecticut vessel bill of sale provides the buyer with the required documentation for registering a boat in the state. It tells the Department of Motor Vehicles (DMV) that two (2) parties came together to transfer ownership of watercraft legally. In other words, it indicates that the buyer did not steal the boat and the seller no longer has responsibilities for it. Since the form provides the contact information of both individuals, the DMV or other third parties can contact either person if needed.

Did You Know?

Connecticut residents must have a “Safe Boating Certificate” or “Certificate of Personal Watercraft Operation” to drive a boat legally. They must pass an official boating course and exam to obtain a license, which they must keep on board when operating the vessel. The state also recognizes New Hampshire, New York, Massachusetts, and Rhode Island certifications.

How to Register a Boat in Connecticut (6 Steps)

All motorized boats and sailboats (19 1/2 feet or longer) require registration in Connecticut. The process must occur at a DMV office.

Step 1 – Settle Debts

Connecticut does not allow owners to register vessels until they have a clean record with no outstanding payments due. For example, they must pay their taxes, tickets, or other fines before applying for registration. In addition, they cannot have restrictions or suspensions that interfere with their driver’s license or ability to register or title a car. The state’s online service allows individuals to check for compliance issues before attending their appointment.

Step 2 – Gather Forms + Make Appointment

The DMV only considers applications with the required information in the correct format. Owners must have the necessary forms signed and dated as needed.

Next, the applicant must make an appointment with the DMV since the state requires first-time registration to happen in person. Individuals must log onto the online system and ensure they choose the correct option. If they select an incorrect choice, the DMV holds the right to cancel or turn them away.

Bring the Following:

Step 3 – Aquatic Invasive Species (AIS) Stamp

AIS pollutes freshwater systems, causing irreparable damage to ecosystems and vessels. Connecticut has decided to fund projects that work to keep harmful bacteria and water life out of lakes, rivers, and ponds in the state. Therefore, the state charges a small fee to residents and non-residents that use their boats in these areas.

The DMV charges $5 for an AIS stamp when registering or renewing the vessel. The AIS logo appears on the registration decal to show that the owner has paid the fees.

Out-of-state boaters must have a stamp before using their vessel in Connecticut waters. They must pay $20 and keep a copy of the online receipt as proof of purchase.

Step 4 – Register

The applicant must attend their previously booked appointment with the forms and payment ready. Fees vary as they depend on the boat’s length and hull type. Additional costs include sales tax, which considers the type of boat, the purchase location, and the individual’s residency status.

Step 5 – Adhere Decals + Connecticut Number

If the state approves the registration, the owner receives a vessel number and two (2) decals. The information differs from the HIN, a number that federal law requires on all boats built after November 1, 1972. If the manufacturer did not assign a HIN, the owner must apply for it using Form EPBS-02.

A Connecticut vessel registration number contains an eight (8) character sequence with two letters followed by four numbers and two letters (i.e., CT-4859-JF). Each section of letters and numbers must have a hyphen or space to separate them.

The owner must permanently place the number on the boat’s left and right front sides. It needs to have three (3) inch tall block letters that others can see from at least one hundred (100) feet away. The color cannot blend with the boat’s paint, such as a yellow boat with yellow letters. Instead, it must stand out against its background. For example, an individual could use black letters against yellow paint since the colors contrast.

Each decal must sit two (2) inches to the right of the registration number in alignment with it. Additional text or stickers cannot exist in this area as it blocks others from clearly seeing the information.

Step 6 – Renew Annually

Boat registration in Connecticut must occur yearly. Vessel owners can renew online, by mail, or in person (as long as they do not owe taxes or fees to the state). Renewal notices with incorrect vessel details delay the process as the owner must provide the updated information by mail.

If the state requires additional documents, the applicant must send them by mail. However, if they only need to send the standard forms, they can renew online using their driver’s license, boat number, HIN, and social security number. The DMV provides online applicants with their registration information within seven (7) to ten (10) days. When renewing, the individual must ensure that they provide the correct mailing address to prevent delays.

Mail renewals require the resident to submit the notice from the state. The individual must update the form to ensure the DMV has accurate information on file. Then, they must mail the required documents and payment. The state should send their updated registration within twenty (20) days.

Mailing Address:
Department of Motor Vehicles
60 State Street
Wethersfield, CT 06109
Attention: Central Issuance Operations Unit