|Indiana Boating Registration
All motorized vessels, including those powered by electric trolling motors, are required to be registered in the state of Indiana.
Title Your Boat
If your boat must be registered, it must also have a certificate of title. A title is your proof of ownership in case the vessel is lost, damaged or stolen.
** We recommend that you title your boat, regardless of exceptions.
Your boat's classification is determined by its length and type of propulsion. The class will determine applicable laws, required equipment and the registration fees you will pay upon initial registration and at renewal.
Boat Registration and Title Fees:
In Indiana, boat owners must pay a one-time registration fee, a title fee, an annual $5 DNR fee and annual excise taxes.
If you own a sailboat or motorboat that is registered, operated, docked, or stored in Indiana, you are required to pay the annual boat excise tax.
Indiana Code - Section 6-6-11-10
Registration and Title Applications are Available from:
Once a proper application is submitted with the required payment, you will receive a Certificate of Registration and two (2) decals in the mail. The Certificate of Registration must be carried on board when boat is in use. The excise tax / validation decals must be affixed to the boat. See below for placement instructions.
Numbering Your Vessel
Once your boat has been assigned a registration number and decals, you must display them on your boat correctly. The registration number must be displayed on each side of the bow, read from left to right and in a position to be distinctly visible. The letters and numbers must be of a plain BLOCK design, at least three (3) inches tall and of a color that contrasts to the color of the hull. There must be a two (2) inch space between the letter and number groups:
Hull Identification Numbers (HIN) are the same as Vehicle Identification Numbers (VIN) used to identify individual automobiles.
Before you can register your homemade boat, you must first apply for a Hull Identification Number with the Indiana Bureau of Motor Vehicles (BMV).
How to Renew Your Boat Registration
Indiana boat registrations must be renewed every year. You will receive a reminder by mail approximately 30 days before your deadline. You can renew your registration online, in person or via the US Postal Service.
Renew In Person
Go to your local BMV office with your original registration, photo ID and payment.
In addition to renewing in person at your local BMV office, registrations may also be renewed at select AAA license branches in Marion and Hamilton counties. Residents of Lake or Porter counties may renew registrations at Clean Air Car Check testing sites.
Renew By Mail
Send your original registration along with your payment to the address listed. Your registration should be returned to you within ten days.
Replace Lost Registration
If you lose your registration, you can order and print a replacement registration online.
Replace Lost Decals
If you lose or destroy your decals, you must apply to the BMV for duplicates and submit a processing fee.
Replace Lost Title
If you lose your boat's title, a replacement may be purchased using any of the options listed below. You must provide a valid, unexpired photo ID.
You are required to report the following changes to the Indiana Bureau of Motor Vehicles: