To register a ship, you must submit a document of title proving that the ship’s owner has title to the ship. The document of title must fulfil a number of formal requirements.
As a general rule, you should use the forms B1 (Builder’s Certificate) and B2 (Bill of Sale), which have been approved by the Registrar of Shipping.
However, this requirement may usually be deviated from if a corresponding foreign Bill of Sale or Builder’s Certificate contains the same details as the approved forms.
Normally, an invoice or purchase receipt is not sufficient as a document of title.
The document of title must be done in Danish or English to be registered.
Clear indication of title to the ship
The document of title must clearly show that title to the ship is transferred from the seller to the buyer, and in respect of new builds, from the shipyard to the client.
If the document of title does not indicate a date of transfer to the buyer or the client, the document may be accompanied by a Protocol of Delivery and Acceptance stating the date of transfer. The Protocol of Delivery and Acceptance may be sent by e-mail and the signatories’ signing powers will not be verified.
It is essential that the document of title is signed by the party transferring the ship (the seller or the shipyard).
Original, dated and legible signatures
The document of title submitted must carry the original signatures of the transferor (the seller or shipyard). All signatures must be dated, stating the day, month and year of signing. The names of the signatories must be repeated in block capitals, in typescript, by a stamp or the like.
If the transferor is a company, the document of title must be signed by the authorised officers of the company.
The document of title may also be signed by a person who is not authorised to sign for the company if he or she holds a power of attorney to sign. In that case, you must present an original power of attorney signed by the authorised officers. Read more about the formal requirements for powers of attorney.
If the seller or the shipyard is a Danish company, the signing authority of the members of management may be documented by referring to the Danish Central Business Register (CVR).
If the seller or the shipyard is a foreign company, the signing authority may be documented by a notary attesting to the identity and authority of the person signing on behalf of the company.
If the notary is not resident in the EU or the EEA, the notary’s attestation must be authenticated or apostilled. If the notary is resident in the EU/EEA, no authentication or apostille is required.
An attesting witness is a person who, by signing, certifies the authenticity of the signature, the legal capacity of the signatory and the correctness of the date.
If a person has any financial interest in the transaction or is closely related to the signatory, for example a spouse, he or she cannot sign a document as an attesting witness.
The names, occupations and addresses of the attesting witnesses must be stated, and their signatures, unless they are completely legible, must be repeated in block capitals, by a stamp or in typescript.
If a lawyer signs as an attesting witness, his or her title, name and business address must clearly appear. If a notary attests the document, the notary’s signature must be legible and the document must be provided with a stamp.
- 2 attesting witnesses
- 1 lawyer
- 1 notary
- 2 attesting witnesses with copies of passports
- 1 notary
Documentation of previous owners – only the Register of Shipping and the Boat Register
The Register of Shipping requires documentation of each previous owner of the ship from the date when it was delivered from the shipyard.
Documentation of previous owners may be in the form of bills of sale, contracts of sale, receipts, builder’s certificates – or previous owners may fill out a declaration stating from whom they purchased the ship and to whom they subsequently sold it.
However, if the ship has previously been registered in the Register of Shipping but has been deleted, you only need to submit documentation of owners back to the owner registered at the time when the ship was deleted.
If the ship has been registered in a foreign register, you only need to submit documentation of owners back to the party registered as owner in the foreign ship register when the ship was deleted from that register.