How to License a Boat Trailer

by Tara Dooley
Not all states require licensing of trailers.

Not all states require licensing of trailers.

Boat trailers are typically lighter in weight than most other types of trailers; as such, boat trailers do not require licensing in many states. However, some states do require licensing--either because they require licensing of all trailers or because of what the trailer would be hauling. In states that insist on registration of boat trailers, the process is simple and similar to registering a vehicle.

Contact your local Department of Motor Vehicles or Transportation Department office and ask if registration is required for trailers. Many states require all trailers to be registered, but some require registration for only certain types of trailers and some don't require registration on any trailers. An online search might be the easiest way to determine how to contact the agency; or you can find a phone number in the blue (government) pages of your phone book.

Contact your insurance agent to see if you are required to have insurance on your trailer. Some states do not require insurance on light trailers, but since it is a boat trailer, it might need some insurance since the boat has value.

Go to the Department of Motor Vehicles office in your area to register the trailer if you found out that it is required. Bring proof of ownership such as a title or bill of sale.

Fill out any forms that they give to you, and pay any fees required to obtain registration for your trailer. You will receive a license plate to put on the trailer so that it can be identified. Fees vary by state.

About the Author

Tara Dooley has written for various websites since 2008. She has worked as an accountant, after-school director and retail manager in various locations. Dooley holds a Bachelor of Science in business management and finance.

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