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Agent's Handbook for Registration of Undocumented Vessels - Chapter 1

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Vessel Agent Information

1.000 Introduction

This manual, formerly called Agent’s Handbook for Registration of Undocumented Vessels, is designed to provide vessel agents, registration services, and financial institutions, with vessel registration transaction requirements. The Agent’s Undocumented Vessel Registration Handbook is available online only.

The Department of Motor Vehicles (DMV) created the Industry Tools page on our website to offer pertinent vessel industry information in one convenient area. On the Industry Tools page, you will find Vehicle Industry News (VIN) memos, Occupational Licensing Industry News (OLIN) memos, manuals, forms, tables (such as the financial institution listing), and links to other programs and websites.

DMV issues VIN and OLIN memos, as needed, with new procedures and requirements that may affect your business and supersede or modify the information and requirements in this manual.

To be notified when a VIN or OLIN is updated, subscribe to DMV’s E-mail Alert Service at DMV’s E-mail Alert Service.

1.005 Agents (CVC §9858)

CVC §9858 authorizes DMV to appoint undocumented vessel registration agents by contractual agreement after approval of the Application for Appointment and Agreement as a Non-Public Undocumented Vessel Registration Agent (OL 54) form.

1.010 Appointment Termination (CVC §9858 and CCR §190.34)

DMV may authorize any person to act as an agent for the issuance of a certificate of number or temporary certificate of number. By applying, the agent has agreed to comply with responsibilities, duties, and conditions set forth on the agreement of appointment. Failure to comply will result in termination of the agents authorization.

1.015 Business Licensing

DMV does not license vessel and marine dealers. Contact the Board of Equalization (BOE) at www.boe.ca.gov and your local county or city administration offices for information regarding retail business licenses.

1.020 Conditions for Appointment (CCR §190.34)

To be appointed, a vessel agent must:

  • Maintain a place of business related to the marine industry that is open to the general public.
     
  • Identify the place of business by a sign or other prominent display of the business name.
     
  • Keep all monies collected for the registration of vessels separate and account for these funds on forms in accordance with procedures established by DMV (CVC §9859).
     
  • Make supplies issued by DMV available for review and return them on demand to an authorized DMV employee.
     
  • Notify DMV immediately in writing of any change in the business, including location, termination of business, or other circumstances which would warrant discontinuation of the appointment.

1.025 Dealer and Manufacturer Numbers (CCR §190.08)

Undocumented vessels using California waters must display a current registration number (CF number).

A vessel dealer or manufacturer may obtain a special series number for demonstrating or testing a vessel held in inventory which is not currently registered.Refer to the Application for Special Numbers (Dealers and Manufacturers) section in Chapter 2. The number is valid only during the period of test or demonstration and must not be permanentl y affixed to any vessel. These numbers are not transferable. The letter suffixes are as follows:

Dealer: DA-DZ
Manufacturer: MA-MY
Example: CF1234DA

These numbers are issued only from DMV headquarters and cannot be issued over the phone.To obtain a dealer or manufacturer number:

  • Complete an Application for Boat Registration Number Dealer-Manufacturer (BOAT 101A) form.
     
  • Circle Dealer or Manufacturer on the form.
     
  • Show the dealer’s or manufacturer’s Board of Equalization account number on the form.
     
  • Mail the form with the required fee to: Department of Motor Vehicles Vessel Section, MS C272 PO Box 942869 Sacramento, CA 94269-0001

1.030 Document Preparation Service Fee (CVC §9858.1)

A vessel agent may charge a document preparation fee not to exceed twenty ($20) dollars. This fee is collected at the vessel agent’s discretion and is not remitted to the department. It is unlawful to represent this as a government fee.

1.035 Duties of Agents (CVC §§9858, 9859 and CCR §§190.36, 190.38)

Vessel agents may process the following applications for their customers:

  • Original vessel registration.
     
  • Transfer of vessel ownership.
     
  • Renewal of vessel registration.
     
  • Duplicate California Certificates of Ownership, California Certificates of Number, and stickers.

Important: Vessel agents can only register the vessels or trailers they sell.

Vessel agents must:

  • Remit state funds on the agent’s check, certified check, or money order made payable to DMV for the amount of fees collected.
     
  • Prepare and send to DMV a Transmittal of Vessel Registration Applications (ADM 173-1) form for all transactions processed with the documents and fees at least once a week.
     
  • Complete and provide a Quarterly Physical Inventory (BOAT 124-1) form by the fifth of January, April, July, and October.
     
  • By the end of the month, if no transactions have been processed, submit a BOAT 124-1 stating “No transactions during the month.”
     
  • Not send registration applications or fees to a local field office.
     
  • Not request accountable items or forms from a local field office. Only DMV headquarters can process vessel agent work.
     
  • Send their work/fees directly to DMV headquarters with a Cashiers Daily Record (ADM 173) form to:

    Department of Motor Vehicles
    Vessel Section, MS C272
    PO Box 942869
    Sacramento, CA 94269-0001

1.040 Occupational Licensing (OL) Branch

Contact the OL Branch for forms, application packages, or general questions at (916) 229-3126. DMV’s website at www.dmv.ca.gov provides vessel agents with up-to-date information and forms. Search for Occupational Licensing or click Forms.

1.045 Ordering Vessel Forms and Supplies for Agent’s Use Only

There is no charge to order vessel agent forms and supplies. Vessel agents may obtain forms by submitting a request on vessel agent letterhead which identifies the forms needed by number and name, quantities required, street address for delivery (no P.O. Box), contact name, and phone number to DMV by:

  • Phone at (916) 229-3126
     
  • Fax at (916) 229-4728
     
  • Mail to:

Department of Motor Vehicles
Occupational Licensing Branch, MS L224
PO Box 932342
Sacramento, CA 94232-3420

DMV sends supplies first class mail or courier service; therefore, to ensure delivery, someone must be present to receive the order. Allow a minimum of 10 working days for delivery.

Upon receipt of accountable items:

  • Verify the numeric sequences.
     
  • Note any discrepancies on the white copy of the Notice of Transfer of Accountable or Controlled Items (ADM 518) form.
     
  • Sign, date, and return the white copy of the ADM 518 to the address above. Treat these items like cash.

1.050 Ordering Vessel Registration-Related Forms

There is no charge to order vessel forms and supplies. Vessel agents may obtain forms by submitting a request on vessel agent letterhead which identifies the forms needed by number and name, quantities required, street address for delivery (no P.O. Box), contact name, and phone number to DMV by:

  • Mail to:

Department of Motor Vehicles
Materials Management
4201 Sierra Point Dr. Ste. 112
Sacramento, CA 95834-1998
Fax at: (916) 928-6817

  • E-mail to dmvasdpublicforms@dmv.ca.gov

Form Number

Form Name

ADM 518 Notice of Transfer of Accountable or Controlled Items
BOAT 100* Application for Historical Vessel Plaque
BOAT 101* Application for Registration Number, Certificate of Ownership and Certificate of Number for Undocumented Vessel
BOAT 101A* Application for Boat Registration Number (Dealer-Manufacturer)
BOAT 110* Vessel Dealer or Manufacturer's Sales Tax Certification
BOAT 111* Vessel Verification
BOAT 124-1* Quarterly Physical Inventory
BOAT 152* Application for Lien Sale Authorization and Lienholder’s Certification Vessel or Vessel/Trailer Valued Over $1,500
REG 5* Affidavit for Transfer Without Probate-California Titled Vehicle or Vessels Only
REG 101* Statement to Record Ownership/Statement of Error or Erasure
REG 102* Certificate of Non-Operation/Planned Non-Operation Certificate
REG 119* Certificate of Repossession-Conditional Sale Contract
REG 135* Bill of Sale
REG 138* Notice of Transfer and Release of Liability
REG 156* Application for Replacement Plates, Stickers, Documents (Duplicate or Substitute Vessel Sticker/Certificate of Number)
REG 166* Lien Satisfied/Legal Owner/Title Holder Release
REG 227* Application for Duplicate or Paperless Title
REG 256* Statements of Facts
REG 256A* Miscellaneous Certifications
REG 260* Power of Attorney
REG 262 Vehicle/Vessel Transfer and Reassignment Form
DMV 14* Notice of Change of Address
INFO 1126* Registration Information Request for Lien Sale
ADM 173 Cashier’s Daily Record
ADM 173-1 Transmittal of Vessel Registration Applications
BOAT 124-1 Quarterly Physical Inventory
OL 54** Application for Appointment and Agreement as a Non-Public Undocumented Vessel Registration Agent
BOAT 102* Permanent Vessel Number and Temporary Certificate of Number
BOAT 103* Miscellaneous Receipt and Temporary Certificate of Number
BOAT 104* Vessel Registration Sticker
*Accountable forms must be ordered. They are no longer automatically distributed.
** This form is only available on the DMV website.
 

1.055 Quarterly Reporting (CCR §190.36)

Complete and submit to DMV a Quarterly Physical Inventory (BOAT 124-1) form by the fifth of January, April, July, and October listing all accountable items issued during the quarter.

At the end of the quarter, if no accountable items have been issued, submit a BOAT 124-1 stating, “No items issued during quarter.”

Submit the BOAT 124-1 to:

Department of Motor Vehicles
Occupational Licensing, MS L224
PO Box 932342
Sacramento, CA 94232-3420

1.060 Registration-Related Services for Vessel Owners

An agent may provide the following information and forms to the public:

  • Notice of Transfer and Release of Liability (REG 138) form. The seller of an undocumented numbered vessel must notify DMV within 5 days of the date of the sale (CVC §9911). Do not forward this form to DMV. It must be submitted on the DMV website at www.dmv.ca.gov or mailed by the seller directly to:

Department of Motor Vehicles
PO Box 942859
Sacramento, CA 94259-0001

  • Notice of Change of Address (DMV 14) form. The owner must complete a DMV 14 on the DMV website at www.dmv.ca.gov or in writing. Advise the owner to correct the address shown on the Certificate of Number by lining out the old address and writing the correct address. Send written DMV 14 forms to DMV along with the weekly agent’s Transmittal of Vessel Registration Applications (ADM 173-1) or have the applicant mail the DMV 14 to DMV at the address shown on the form.

 

1.065 Renewal of Dealer and Manufacturer Numbers

Dealer and manufacturer certificates of number expire every odd year on December 31. Applications for renewal of dealer or manufacturer certificates of number are mailed approximately 60 days prior to the December 31 expiration date. If the renewal fee is not paid by midnight of December 31, a new application and fee are required.

1.070 Undocumented Vessel Registration Program

DMV - appointed vessel agents accept registration or transfer applications for undocumented vessels, issue permanent vessel numbers and temporary certificates of number, and submit documents and fees to DMV. Vessel agents are appointed but not licensed by DMV. They are assigned a unique vessel agent number, which is entered on registration documents.

The Registration Operations Division Vessel Section at DMV headquarters reviews and processes vessel registration documents submitted by vessel agents.

The Licensing Operations Division Occupational Licensing (OL) Branch processes vessel agent applications, appoints applicants to act as agents, maintains appointment records, and ensures compliance of vessel agent program responsibilities.

A list of OL locations is available on the DMV website at www.dmv.ca.gov or by calling (916) 229-3126.

Documented vessels are processed by the U.S. Coast Guard and issued a marine certificate. Throughout this handbook the term “vessel” refers to an undocumented vessel.

For Information About

Contact

  • Vessel registration.
  • Transfer applications.

Registration Operations
Vessel Section, MS C272
PO Box 942869
Sacramento, CA 94269-0001

(916) 657-6288

  • Requests for inventory issuance.
  • An application for appointment.
  • Submission of a Quarterly Physical Inventory Report (Boat 124-1).
Department of Motor Vehicles
Occupational Licensing Unit, MS L224
PO Box 932342
Sacramento, CA 94232-3420

(916) 229-3126

1.075 Urgent Requests for Forms

A vessel agent or agent’s authorized representative may obtain accountable forms (BOAT 102, 103, and 104) by contacting the local Occupational Licensing Branch office (see Occupational Licensing (OL) Branch section in this chapter). There is no charge to order vessel forms and supplies. Vessel agents may obtain forms by submitting a request on vessel agent letterhead which identifies the forms needed by number and name, quantities required, street address for delivery (no P.O. Box), contact name, and phone number to DMV. The authorized person must display sufficient identification (e.g., a driver license or identification card) before accountable items will be released.

1.080 Yacht and Ship Brokers (CH&NC §701)

Yacht and ship brokers negotiate the purchase, sale, or exchange of yachts, they do not own the yachts. Yacht and ship brokers (and “for hire” operators) are licensed by the Division of Boating and Waterways (DBW). For yacht/ship brokers and for hire vessel operator’s licenses see the DBW website at www.dbw.ca.gov/yns/forhire.aspx or write to:

California State Parks
Division of Boating and Waterways
Vessel for Hire Program
One Capitol Mall, Ste 500
Sacramento, CA 95814



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