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Old 11-20-2015, 07:53 AM   #1
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Live in Florida, Keep boat in GA

Hey just a quick question. I currently live in Jacksonville Florida but am thinking about moving the boat to Jekyll Island Georgia. Will I have to register the boat in GA?
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Old 11-20-2015, 10:57 AM   #2
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Depends on what Ga law says. You may be able to move the boat back to Fl. every so many weeks so you are just transient in GA.

Will you be north of the Hurricane insurance line, and saving on insurance? You would not be able to boat in Fl. during H-season, this being the case.
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Old 11-20-2015, 06:12 PM   #3
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Hey just a quick question. I currently live in Jacksonville Florida but am thinking about moving the boat to Jekyll Island Georgia. Will I have to register the boat in GA?
From the state's website.

My boat is registered in another state. Can I use it in Georgia?

If a boat is fully registered and valid in another state, the boat may be used in Georgia. However, after 60 days of continuous use in Georgia, the boat must have Georgia registration.


Depending on how much you use it in Florida, you could be required to maintain two state registrations, but after 60 days, definitely must register in Georgia.
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Old 11-21-2015, 07:21 AM   #4
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I wonder how that cuts with the USCG philosophy of registered in state of principal use....60 days is a pretty short time for Georgia to reinvent principal use.

Wonder if challenged, is it more of a taxation issue?

Home porting the boat at Jekyll would definitely require a change of registration..even if you went back to Florida every 60 days under the "principal use" concept.
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Old 11-21-2015, 10:44 AM   #5
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From the state's website.

My boat is registered in another state. Can I use it in Georgia?
If a boat is fully registered and valid in another state, the boat may be used in Georgia. However, after 60 days of continuous use in Georgia, the boat must have Georgia registration.
Depending on how much you use it in Florida, you could be required to maintain two state registrations, but after 60 days, definitely must register in Georgia.
Typical bureaucratic mumbo jumbo. I wonder if they can explain the difference between storage and use?
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Old 11-21-2015, 12:24 PM   #6
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I looked at the requirements for GA and it looks as if I would have to register it there and yes for insurance purposes and a new place to boat for awhile. I'm sick and tired of the exorbitant rates in Florida when we haven't had any hurricanes in 11 years. The excuses I hear are complete crap. I've lived in NE FL for 21 years and the closest we came was Floyd in '99 here in Jacksonville. Florida needs to be divided into different zones in my opinion.
SCOTTIE DAVIS as far as not boating in FL during hurricane season is bunk. If I keep my boat in St. Mary's, GA it is only 9 miles from Fernandina FL? Makes no sense, Besides keeping the boat in Brunswick would allow me to go North, I've done enough of Florida over the years. Working my way back to the Chesapeake. Retired military but still working.
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Old 11-21-2015, 12:26 PM   #7
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I wonder how that cuts with the USCG philosophy of registered in state of principal use....60 days is a pretty short time for Georgia to reinvent principal use.

Wonder if challenged, is it more of a taxation issue?

Home porting the boat at Jekyll would definitely require a change of registration..even if you went back to Florida every 60 days under the "principal use" concept.
Many states use 90 days and many use 60. States have the same type rules on auto registration and on driver's licenses. Not something unique to boating.
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Old 11-21-2015, 12:32 PM   #8
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I looked at the requirements for GA and it looks as if I would have to register it there and yes for insurance purposes and a new place to boat for awhile. I'm sick and tired of the exorbitant rates in Florida when we haven't had any hurricanes in 11 years. The excuses I hear are complete crap. I've lived in NE FL for 21 years and the closest we came was Floyd in '99 here in Jacksonville. Florida needs to be divided into different zones in my opinion.
SCOTTIE DAVIS as far as not boating in FL during hurricane season is bunk. If I keep my boat in St. Mary's, GA it is only 9 miles from Fernandina FL? Makes no sense, Besides keeping the boat in Brunswick would allow me to go North, I've done enough of Florida over the years. Working my way back to the Chesapeake. Retired military but still working.
I don't know any insurance policies where St. Mary's going to make a difference from Fernandina. Personally, I would encourage you to check out other insurers. We're insured in Florida and have no named storm exclusion or requirementsd. I repeat for everyone that there are more boats kept in Florida than VA, NC, SC, and GA combined and there are insurers who have no problems insuring. Look at some of the major yacht insurance companies. Get a good broker to research for you. But St. Mary's is still south of where many insurers who do have restrictions cut off the boundary. What is "bunk" to use your term, is insurance brokers who have a hard time accommodating those wanting to boat in Florida. Just go around South Florida during August and see the number of boats and it becomes obvious that some insurers are more Florida friendly than others.

Now, if you want to be further north then that's a different story.
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Old 11-21-2015, 12:34 PM   #9
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Typical bureaucratic mumbo jumbo. I wonder if they can explain the difference between storage and use?
Most consider storage the same and all I know of consider in water storage the same. A few states do have exclusions for boats hauled for work to be performed and don't count the time from haul to splash.
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Old 11-21-2015, 12:51 PM   #10
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It's wise to know the requirements of any states you're planning on spending long times with. Some will surprise you. California was easy passing through even though we were there for nearly 5 months. However, Washington has a 60 day limit and we had to be aware of it as we not only would have had to register but also pay Washington Sales Tax which is many times that of Florida.

Also, one thing to be aware of. If you live in a state that does not require registration of a documented boat, that can backfire on you. Some states require them to be registered and only exempt you if you're registered in another state.

If you want to know a strong registration and titling law, here's one. If you live and have an auto in Mississippi, it is a felony to register it in another state. That's because car registration is a primary means of taxation in Mississippi and runs as much as $800 or $900 per year. (Average probably $300-400). In neighboring states it's just a registration and more in the neighborhood of $50. So, it's considered avoidance of tax.
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Old 11-22-2015, 02:57 PM   #11
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Originally Posted by knotheadcharters View Post
SCOTTIE DAVIS as far as not boating in FL during hurricane season is bunk. If I keep my boat in St. Mary's, GA it is only 9 miles from Fernandina FL? Makes no sense, Besides keeping the boat in Brunswick would allow me to go North, I've done enough of Florida over the years. Working my way back to the Chesapeake. Retired military but still working.
I am not arguing with you, it's the insurance companies rules, making sense does not seem to be a requirement. I guess they had to draw a hard line somewhere as to hurricane coverage even thou most hurricanes don't have a mailing address to get the memos.
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Old 11-22-2015, 03:16 PM   #12
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Many states use 90 days and many use 60. States have the same type rules on auto registration and on driver's licenses. Not something unique to boating.
Yes, but this is Maryland cut and I believe the way it is supposed to read if federal law truly rules... they say 90 days also then register... but then clarify it here.....

"A vessel may remain longer than 90 days so long as a majority
of the year is spent in another single jurisdiction (i.e. Florida for 7 months and
Maryland for 5 months). "

It is the concept of principal use... again taxation is a different issue even though state DMVs are stuck with trying to collect.
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Old 11-22-2015, 04:00 PM   #13
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Yes, but this is Maryland cut and I believe the way it is supposed to read if federal law truly rules... they say 90 days also then register... but then clarify it here.....

"A vessel may remain longer than 90 days so long as a majority
of the year is spent in another single jurisdiction (i.e. Florida for 7 months and
Maryland for 5 months). "

It is the concept of principal use... again taxation is a different issue even though state DMVs are stuck with trying to collect.
California also recognizes the state of majority of use. But most states do not. I do know of people in the southeast who have had to register in multiple states in the same year. Now in the case of the OP I think he intends to use his in GA.
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Old 11-22-2015, 04:28 PM   #14
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California also recognizes the state of majority of use. But most states do not. I do know of people in the southeast who have had to register in multiple states in the same year. Now in the case of the OP I think he intends to use his in GA.
Here is Delaware's cut on it...I still think this would be a question for the courts...buy not worth the aggravation. It flies in the face of what I understand.

*What is meant by the "State of Principal Use?"*
A.*Your vessel must be registered in its “State of Principal Use.”* “State of Principal Use” means a state on whose waters a vessel is used or to be used most during a calendar year. Delaware regulations state that if the vessel is to be used, docked, or stowed on the waters of this State for over 60 consecutive days, Delaware is its “State of Principal Use.”*

Total BS....
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Old 11-22-2015, 05:27 PM   #15
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Here is Delaware's cut on it...I still think this would be a question for the courts...buy not worth the aggravation. It flies in the face of what I understand.

*What is meant by the "State of Principal Use?"*
A.*Your vessel must be registered in its “State of Principal Use.”* “State of Principal Use” means a state on whose waters a vessel is used or to be used most during a calendar year. Delaware regulations state that if the vessel is to be used, docked, or stowed on the waters of this State for over 60 consecutive days, Delaware is its “State of Principal Use.”*

Total BS....
I think their philosophy is that it's a State of Principal Use at that time. Perhaps not for a year, but more than 60 days. That's where the rule comes into play. Regardless the states that require registration after 60 or 90 days far outnumber the states like Maryland that yields to principal use.
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Old 12-02-2015, 12:21 PM   #16
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Many states use 90 days and many use 60. States have the same type rules on auto registration and on driver's licenses. Not something unique to boating.
Correct. You have to follow the rules where you keep your boat, car, truck, etc. And don't try to creatively interpret them. Governments are not fond of tax evaders.
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Old 03-13-2016, 09:44 PM   #17
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Georgia is not very strict on their license laws. A friend of mine lives in Florida and is keeping his boat in Brunswick while he is trying to sell it. The boat has been there for over a year. No questions or concerns from the state.. This is the case with several boats in that area.
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