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Mississippi Boat Registration

Mississippi law requires all sailboats and every undocumented vessel equipped with propulsion machinery, whether or not such machinery is the principal source of propulsion, to be registered with the state before being used on Mississippi waterways. Owners of new or used boats must register their boats within ten (10) days of acquisition.

All motorized vessels, including those powered by electric trolling motors, are required to be registered in the state of Mississippi.


  • Non-motorized vessels
  • Vessels that are registered in another state and are operated on Mississippi waters for 60 consecutive days or less.

The Boat Registration Process

When you register a new boat in Mississippi be sure to include the sales invoice or other proof of payment of Mississippi sales tax with your application. If the boat was purchased in another state you may pay Mississippi state sales tax at the local county Tax Collector's office.

Registration forms are available at any local county tax collector's office, most places where boats are sold or serviced, any Mississippi Department of Wildlife, Fisheries and Parks' (MDWFP) Office and  online. Complete the form, attach all required documents, enclose the appropriate fee, sign and mail to:

Mississippi Department of Wildlife, Fisheries and Parks
Boat Registration
1505 Eastover Drive
Jackson, MS 39211-6374

Title Your Boat / Motor

Although a boat must be registered before it can be titled, Mississippi offers the option for titling boats and motors. This is not a mandatory requirement, however, a more complete record of ownership is a good idea for boat owners. A $12.70 fee is charged for original applications, duplicates or transfers. The application can be found here.

We recommend that you title your boat and motor.

Boat Classifications

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.

To find your boat's length, measure the straight line distance from the foremost part of the boat (bow) to the rearmost part of the boat (stern), excluding any protruding attachments. Your measurement must be exact.

Mississippi Boat Registration Fees:

In Mississippi, boat owners must pay annual registration fees based on boat size as follows:

Watercraft Registration Fees
less than 16’ in length$ 10.20
16’ to less than 25’ 11" in length$ 25.20
26’ to less than 39’ 11" in length$ 47.70
40’ and over in length$ 47.70
Duplicate / Corrected Registration$ 7.70

The above costs do not include property taxes, clerk’s fees, titling fees or any other applicable charges.

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 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:
Correct: MS 1234 YZ or MS-1234-YZ
Incorrect: MS1234YZ

Registration decals are to be placed on both sides of the bow, before the registration prefix, within six inches of and in line with the registration number.

Upon renewal every year, the old registration decals are to be removed and the current ones applied in their place.

Home-Built Vessels

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 (HIN) with the Mississippi Department of Wildlife, Fisheries and Parks (MDWFP).

The first step is to apply for an inspection of your vessel by completing the application and mailing it to the address on the application along with $12.70. An inspection will be scheduled and a Hull ID number will be issued upon a satisfactory inspection.

Once you receive your Hull Identification Number, i addition to affixing it to the transom of your boat, write it down and put it in a place separate from your vessel.

How to Renew Your Boat Registration

You will receive a reminder by mail approximately 30 days before your boat registration renewal will expire. You can renew your registration online, on the phone, in person or via the US Postal Service.

Renew Online 24/7

To renew your Mississippi Boat Registration online, have your registration card and credit card with you and click here. Be sure to write do your confirmation number.

Renew Via the Phone 24/7

To renew your Mississippi Boat Registration by phone, have your registration card and credit card with you and calli 1-800-5GO-HUNT (1-800-546-4868).

Renew In Person

To renew your boat registration in person, you may go any retail outlet where hunting and fishing licenses are sold. Be sure to have your current registration with you.

Renew By Mail

To renew your boat registration by mail, send your original registration along with your payment to the address below. Your new registration and decals should be returned to you within ten days.

Mississippi Department of Wildlife, Fisheries and Parks
Boat Registration
1505 Eastover Drive
Jackson, MS 39211-6374

How to Replace a Lost Registration

If you have lost your registration card and/or decals you may obtain a duplicate at any retail outlet where hunting and fishing licenses are sold or by calling 1-800-5GO-HUNT (1-800-546-4868), which is available 24/7.

Reporting Changes

You are required to report address, ownership and/or boat condition changes to the MDFWP within 15 days of such change.