South Carolina Boat Title Law

South Carolina’s legislature has passed laws governing boat titles and outboard motor titles in the state.

Most of the regulations that apply to your boat and boat motor comes under Title 50 – Fish, Game and Watercraft, Chapter 21, Article 1.

How can I read South Carolina’s laws regarding boat titles and outboard motor titles?

You can read the South Carolina Boating and Safety Act of 1999 here.

What recent changes has South Carolina made to boat titles and registration?

In South Carolina Legislature Act 223, the law changes when watercraft owners must pay their property tax to their county.

Act 223 also chances boat registrations from a three-year renewal to a one-year renewal cycle.

Act 223 ultimately changes the timing of when you will receive a property tax notice for a watercraft (boat, boat motor, or Jet Ski). This legislative change causes watercraft property taxes to be issued according to the DNR registration renewal month, as opposed to the current method where watercraft property taxes are issued in the fall, with a due date of January 15th.

How do I buy an in-state boat?

When you buy an in-state boat, your boat title service begins at your county’s tax auditor’s office. When you furnish the required documentation, your county will issue to you a tax bill.

After paying the property tax on your boat and/or motor, you can begin accessing DNR’s boat title services.

How do I buy an out-of-state boat?

When purchasing a watercraft from an individual that has an out of state title, this transaction will begin at the SCDNR, and the South Carolina title and registration will be issued.  Once the registration is issued you will receive a tax notice roughly 30 days from the date the watercraft was registered. This tax notice will be labeled 120 Day Tax Notice, and will be due approximately 90 days after the tax notice is issued.

Can I do this myself?

Yes. You can buy our ebook, “Boat Title Service for South Carolina,” for $9.95. This book will tell you everything you need to know about making your boat and/or outboard motor legal for use in South Carolina.

Inside, you’ll find a quick start guide as well as clickable links to essential online resources.

You’ll gain access to on-screen fillable forms that can save time and improve accuracy.

In addition to concise procedures for every situation, our book provides the latest information regarding the taxes and fees you owe.

Instantly download “Boat Title Service for South Carolina” via Gumroad, our service provider.