Until recently, the purchase of a new boat in Tennessee required several steps. First, it was necessary for the boat owner to take the bill of sale to the local courthouse to account for taxes. A second trip was later necessary to complete the registration process.

In light of recent changes, boat owners may now complete the registration online using technology provided by the Tennessee Wildlife Resources Agency’s (TWRA) license vendor.

TWRA License Division chief Susie Spriggs said, “ Now a new boat owner can complete the process without having to visit a second office or wait for the mail.”

Once the necessary taxes have been taken care of, a new boat registration can be completed visiting www.tnwildlife.org and clicking on the “Boat Registration” menu.  It should also be notes that registrations may be set up to automatically renew at that time.

Upon approval of completion of the registration application, a decal and registration card will be sent within two business days. 

TWRA enforces boating laws in Tennessee, which includes checking that boats are properly registered when on the water.

It should be noted that registration and hull identification numbers (HINs) are very important in the application procedure. TWRA has been updating thousands of incorrect hull numbers, which could create an online issue for some boaters attempting to register their boats.

If a hull number has not been updated in the TWRA system, the registration process will not be able to be completed.  However, TWRA will receive a message to contact the boat owner involved.

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