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U.S. Coast Guard Update 

9 days ago

U.S. Coast Guard Update

Will Hillyer, USCG

New Hull Identification Number Policy Letter:

The Coast Guard is in the final stages of drafting the HIN policy letter. Once completed, distribution will be provided to all state BLA’s and we will ask that they also deliver to the state titling and registration supervisors. We will be asking for the widest dissemination of this document to all titling and registration offices to ensure that everyone is aware of the new policy guidance. This letter is intended to clarify things within the regulation that are ambiguous.

Lozman v. Riviera Beach:

We still find that many people within titling and registration are not aware of the Lozman v. Riviera Beach Supreme Court Ruling. This landmark cases for the boating industry essentially draws a line between a “floating home” and a “houseboat”, with the former being classified as not a vessel and the latter as being a vessel. This case is important as the SCOTUS used several factors when determining whether it is a house or a vessel. The Coast Guard today uses these findings as the litmus test to determine the difference between a floating home and a houseboat. If you are interested in the case it is provided here: 11-626 Lozman v. Riviera Beach (01/15/2013) (

Coast Guard Membership on VIRT:

The Coast Guard currently has three members on the NASBLA Vessel Identification, Registration & Titling Committee (VIRT). Those members are Mr. Will Hillyer, Mrs. Kristin Williams and Mrs. Susan Weber.

Here is an introduction for Mr. Will Hillyer:

Mr. Will Hillyer

Will Hillyer is a 24 year veteran of the U.S. Coast Guard who retired as a Chief Warrant Officer (BOSN). His career was diverse spanning many facets of the Coast Guard’s missions including Law Enforcement, Aids to Navigation, Search and Rescue Planning, Hurricane Response, and Ice Breaking on the Chesapeake Bay. Most of his career was spent in the Florida Keys as a law enforcement boarding officer tasked with counter-narcotics and alien-migrant interdiction missions.

Mr. Hillyer’s last active duty tour sent him to Washington D.C. as a Recreational Boating Safety Specialist overseeing the MIC and HIN program in the USCG Boating Safety Division. Upon retirement from active duty, Mr. Hillyer stayed on with the Coast Guard’s Boating Safety Division doing essentially the same mission but as a civilian employee.

Mr. Hillyer’s current duties include boating accident investigations assistance, grant management, contract management, HIN policy management, as well as membership on numerous panels and committees that work on the improvement of boating safety policies.

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