Registering in the Small Vessel Register: After you register

Once we've processed your request, we will mail you a certificate of registry.

The certificate of registry will show the official number of your vessel. The official number will begin with the letter “C” (eg, C00000BC).

Your certificate of registry

Your certificate includes important identification information and should be kept on your vessel at all times.

We recommend storing your certificate in a plastic bag or other covering to protect it from damage. Do not laminate your certificate. Laminated certificates will be considered invalid.

If you do not have a valid certificate of registry for your vessel, you are subject to fines and penalties under the Canada Shipping Act, 2001.


Your certificate of registry will give you an official number that begins with the letter “C” (eg, C00000BC) and is unique to your vessel.

Your certificate is not valid until your vessel is marked as follows:

  • numbers in block characters not less than 75 mm high and in a colour that contrasts with the background colour
  • located:
    • on each side of the bow of the vessel, or
    • on a board permanently attached to the vessel as close to the bow as possible, so the number is clearly visible from each side of the bow

Replacement certificate

No fee

If you’ve lost or misplaced your certificate of registry, or if it has been destroyed, you can send a written request for a replacement certificate of registry by mail, fax or email to the Vessel Registration Office. Include your official number as shown on your certificate of registry and your address.