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How to Register a Boat or Water Craft in Illinois

Most new boats must be registered through the Illinois Department of Natural Resources (DNR) before they can be sailed. A vessel must be registered within 15 days of purchase.

VESSELS THAT REQUIRE REGISTRATION

  1. Vessels sailing in Illinois waters

VESSELS THAT DO NOT REQUIRE REGISTRATION

  1. Boats registered with the US Coast Guard using Illinois waters for less than 60 days
  2. Surfboards or sailboards
  3. Boats registered in another state and not being used in Illinois for more than 60 days
  4. Boats registered in another country temporarily plying in Illinois waters
  5. A ship's lifeboat
  6. Boats owned by the United States, a solitary state, a county, or a municipality, with clearly visible identification.
  7. Racing boats brought into the State for racing
  8. Any oared or paddle boat under 16 feet in illinois water.
  9. Any canoe or kayak that is not motorized & not a sail boat under 16 feet

TO REGISTER BY U.S. MAIL

  1. Complete a Watercraft Registration/Title Application | Form IL 422-0321
  2. On new boats locate the Manufacturer's Certification of Origin.
  3. On used boats find the previous owner's registration and title.
  4. Determine the sales tax by calling (800) 732-8866 or (217) 782-3336 (make the check payable to Illinois Department of Revenue).
  5. Include proof of sales tax payment (if you have already paid it).
  6. Make the check payable to Department of Natural Resources.

For a Brand New Watercraft - Class 1 (EXCEPT jet skis/PWCs) - purchased from an Illinois dealer or retailer include Original Manufacturer's Statement of Origin.

For a Brand New Watercraft - Class 1 (jet skis/PWCs), Class 2, 3, 4 - If purchased from a dealer include Original Manufacturer's Statement of Origin and submit a ST-556 tax form; if purchased from a retailer submit a RUT-25 tax form and bill of sale.

For New Watercraft - ALL Watercraft Class Types purchased from an OUT-OF-STATE DEALER/RETAILER include Original Manufacturer's Statement of Origin and submit a RUT-25 tax form and Copy of Bill of Sale or Purchase Agreement.

For Used Watercraft - currently issued an out-of-state registration number - Class 1 (EXCEPT jet skis/PWCs) - acquired from an individual include Original out-of-state title (if titling state) or registration card (if non-titling state).

For Used Watercraft - currently issued an out-of-state registration number - Class 1 (jet skis/PWCs), Class 2, 3, 4 - acquired from an individual include Original out-of-state title (if titling state) or registration card (if non-titling state) and submit a RUT-25 tax form and Copy of Bill of Sale or Purchase Agreement.

You can request copies to be mailed to you by calling the Illinois Department of Revenue's 24-hour Forms Order at 1-800-356-6302.

Mail the boat registration application and proof of ownership to: Watercraft Illinois Department of Natural Resources P.O. Box 19226 Springfield, IL 62794-9226

FEES

Boat registration fees range from $13 to $107, depending on the size of the vessel. Vessels registered in Illinois are subject to sales taxes which can be determined by calling the Illinois Department of Revenue at 800- 732-8866.