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Kansas Boating Requirements


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This summary is designed to inform the boating public about title options, registration requirements, recording methods, record searches, tax rules, and operational guidelines for the State of Kansas. The data is maintained as an open wiki forum where readers are encouraged to participate by sharing knowledge and experiences with this particular jurisdiction. Simply click on the above WikiShare link to contribute further details or suggest a revision.

Registration and Titling

Kansas is a boat registration only state and does not issue titles. All non-exempt boats operating within this jurisdiction are administered by the Department of Wildlife and Parks in Pratt. Titling and registration is not required in Kansas for outboard boat motors. Boat trailer registrations and titles are required on loads over 2,000 lbs. in Kansas. They are optional for those weighing less.

Registration is required on all boats powered by motor or sail in Kansas. Coast Guard documented vessels are also subject to registration. Boats registered in other states are exempt for a visitation period of 60 consecutive days. Kansas is a registration only state and does not issue boat titles. Although current registration certificates may be recognized as proof of ownership in some cases, they do not qualify as titles when it comes to security interests

There are approximately 84,468 boats registered in the State of Kansas. This accounts for 0.7% of all nationwide registrations

Numbering and Marking

Boat registration numbers in Kansas begin with a "KL" designation which is followed by four numbers and then two letters. These must be displayed on all non-documented boats along with registration sticker tabs. Coast Guard documented vessels may not display the state registration numbers. However they must display the state registration tabs, an owner designated vessel name, and a hailing port. An official documentation number must also be affixed to a visible interior location in the hull itself or an integral part of the hull. All vessels manufactured after 1972 are required to have a 12 digit hull identification number affixed to the vessel by the manufacturer. Owners with older boats may apply with the Marine Police Division for a hull number assignment. State assigned hull numbers prefixed with the letters "KAZ" are available for home made boats and those without factory designations. Hull identification number inspections are not required in Kansas.

Recording Methods

Kansas does not issue boat titles therefore security interests in non-documented boats are recorded through Uniform Commercial Code filings.

Tax liens are sometimes flagged in the state's registration database, recorded as Uniform Commercial Code filings, shown on state revenue records, or filed with a county clerk's office.There are no provisions for recording mechanic's liens or other non-secured claims against registered boats which are not documented. If the vessel is USCG documented, a security interest may be perfected by filing a preferred vessel mortgage. These are recorded with the National Vessel Documentation Center with the earliest submissions taking priority. Other lien claims can be filed in the same manner although these function as notifications only. All such filings are indexed on the vessel's underlying abstract of title.

Record Searches

Boat registration records in Kansas are maintained in a datase that is administered by the Department of Wildlife and Parks (`KDPR). This agency provides boat registration search resources for owners and the general public. Visit the WikiTags for insights on how to go about searching the database and obtaining records.

Kansas is a registration only state and does not issue boat titles. State level boat liens are accordingly filed with the Secretary of State's Office as Uniform Commercial Code recordings. This state does not offer online UCC searches without a subscription. Therefore you will need to submit a UCC information request form or use a public record vendor.

State and Federal tax liens on boats are not always recorded in a consistent manner and are therefore difficult to identify. They may show up as a red flag on state registration records, as UCC filings, in state revenue records, in a county clerks records, or on a vessel's abstract of title for documented boats. Given these disparities, it may be worth obtaining the services of a public record vendor that has access to a broad range of personal property lien recordings.

Ownership, mortgage, and lien search recordings for USCG documented vessels can be obtained by ordering an abstract of title and a copy of the certificate of documentation from the National Vessel Documentation Center.

Taxes and Insurance

Sales tax applies to boat transactions and personal property taxes are assessed on boats.

Kansas does not require liability insurance for boats operating on their waters.

Operating and Safety

Unaccompanied boat operators in Kansas between the ages of 12 and 20 must pass a boater safety course and to carry a boater education card.

Transfer, abandonment, theft, or destruction of a Kansas registered boat must be reported to the Marine Police Division within 15 days.


The information contained herein is subject to change without notice and may contain errors or omissions. Be sure to check with the respective government agency before taking action on any such data. More detailed information about all of these topics can be found in the above WikiTags.

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3/29/2022 - Page initiated by Team BoatWiki.



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