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Hello, I will try to help you. Please remember I just report or interpret the law, so the outcome may not be what you hoped for. Boat motors are not registered so there is no central place to check. You can provide the serial number to the local police to check. Rather than notarization, you want to confirm the identity of the seller. If the seller is a thief, it will not protect you because the bill of sale is notarized, a thief cannot give good title as a matter of law. By getting proper identification, you can be sure to direct the police to the proper person. You can do a UCC check on the seller to make sure there is no lien on the motor. I would take the driver's license number and have that on the bill of sale. Your bill of sale should recite that he is the owner of the motor, free and clear of all liens. Other than these things I do not think there is more you can do to protect yourself. If I have answered all your questions, please rate my answer excellent as that is how I am compensated. If you have more questions, please let me know. If the answer was especially helpful you can provide a bonus.
So what you say is no more than the Notary said. Contacting the local police to find if some one is not a thief will not help me if later they find the motor was stolen. There must be a way to verify that the motor is not stolen and who really owns it. Maybe the motor has a identfication number that can be tracked by the state.
The problem is that boats are registered not motors. You could consider asking the seller to show you his proof of purchase and then trace back to the original purchaser of the motor from the manufacturer.
If I have answered all your questions, please rate my answer excellent as that is how I am compensated. If you have more questions, please let me know. If my answer was particularly helpful you can pay a bonus.