Code of the District of Columbia

§ 50–1541.19. Transfer by operation of law.

(a) For the purpose of this section:

(1) “By operation of law” means pursuant to a law or judicial order affecting ownership of a vessel:

(A) Because of death, divorce or other family law proceeding, merger, consolidation, dissolution, or bankruptcy;

(B) Through the exercise of the rights of a lien creditor or a person having a lien created by statute or rule of law; or

(C) Through other legal process.

(2) “Transfer-by-law statement” means a record signed by a transferee stating that by operation of law the transferee has acquired or has the right to acquire an ownership interest in a vessel.

(b) A transfer-by-law statement must contain:

(1) The name and last known mailing address of the owner of record and the transferee and the other information required by § 50-1541.06(b);

(2) Documentation sufficient to establish the transferee’s ownership interest or right to acquire the ownership interest;

(3) A statement that:

(A) The certificate of title is an electronic certificate of title;

(B) The transferee does not have possession of the written certificate of title created in the name of the owner of record; or

(C) The transferee is delivering the written certificate of title to the Harbor Master with the transfer-by-law statement; and

(4) Except for a transfer described in subsection (a)(1)(A) of this section, evidence that notification of the transfer and the intent to file the transfer-by-law statement has been sent to all persons indicated in the files of the Harbor Master as having an interest, including a security interest, in the vessel.

(c) Unless the Harbor Master rejects a transfer-by-law statement for a reason stated in § 50-1541.07(c) or because the statement does not include documentation satisfactory to the Harbor Master as to the transferee’s ownership interest or right to acquire the ownership interest, not later than 20 days after delivery to the Harbor Master of the statement and payment of fees and taxes payable under the law of the District other than this chapter in connection with the statement or with the acquisition or use of the vessel, the Harbor Master shall:

(1) Accept the statement;

(2) Amend the files of the Harbor Master to reflect the transfer; and

(3) If the name of the owner whose ownership interest is being transferred is indicated on the certificate of title:

(A) Cancel the certificate of title even if the certificate of title has not been delivered to the Harbor Master;

(B) Create a new certificate of title indicating the transferee as owner;

(C) Indicate on the new certificate of title any security interest indicated on the canceled certificate of title, unless a court order provides otherwise; and

(D) Deliver the new certificate of title or a record evidencing an electronic certificate of title.

(d) This section shall not apply to a transfer of an interest in a vessel by a secured party under part 6 of Article 9 of Subtitle I of Title 28.