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  #11  
Old 02-02-2010
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Blancke View Post
My question deals with documented vessels purchased in Delaware and Documented. If the vessel is kept in Delaware for more than 183 days is it subject to the Maryland Excise tax if it sails in Maryland waters for 150 days?
Excise tax...probably yes (I live in New England...).

But you should be asking about the sales/use tax, as typically that's the big one. And the general answer is...you will pay the sales/use tax in a state where you have the boat, less whatever you paid in a different state. The whole tread above considers some of the ifs and buts in actual PA/MD practices.

One clarification, if while a resident of a state with a sales/use tax you buy a boat in a different state, and pay sales/use tax to that different state, be extra careful to retain legal proof of the boat's "non-residency". Should you subsequently bring the boat to your residency state, that state may demand their sales/use tax, with no credit for the previous payment, unless you can prove the "non-residency" of the boat at the time you paid the other tax.
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  #12  
Old 02-02-2010
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Blancke View Post
My question deals with documented vessels purchased in Delaware and Documented. If the vessel is kept in Delaware for more than 183 days is it subject to the Maryland Excise tax if it sails in Maryland waters for 150 days?
I preface with the infuriating lawyer answer “it depends.” Theoretically if the purchase occurred in DE and you have more days in a single other state than you have in MD then you should be ok, but…… I have seen DE residents who have dockage facilities in both MD and in DE. The slip rental in MD is a yearly contract so on its face it looks like evidence that the vessel is kept in Maryland for a year. Remember that the burden of proof rests with the tax payer and if you receive an assessment letter that is considered prima facia evidence that you owe the tax. The state’s initial burden has been met by printing the letter. YOU MUST PROVE WITH THRID PARTY EVIDENCE EVERY DAY THAT YOUR VESSEL IS IN BOTH STATES.
Furthermore, the MD, DNR has never actually taken the position that they can count time “in MD” from the moment you slip the mooring lines in another jurisdiction but the way the regulations are written they could take that position. I think the only reason they have not is because, as a matter of common sense, it is ludicrous, however; I never rule out the possibility that someday one of the state of MD’s attorneys will take such a position. I once heard an attorney for MD, state on the record that the comptroller of MD’s position is “Everything is taxable.” The result of taking the regulations to their absurd conclusion can be seen when a vessel slips its mooring lines in Bermuda and comes to MD. Theoretically, some attorney for the state could make the argument that all the time in the Atlantic counts as time in MD for the purposes of the tax. I am not sure that attorney would be able to do so with a straight face but stranger things have happened.

Todd Lochner
Proctor in Admiralty
Lochner Law Firm, P.C.
182 Duke of Gloucester Street Phone: (443) 716-4400
Annapolis, Maryland 21401 Fax: (443) 716-4405
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  #13  
Old 02-02-2010
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Maryland is the state which, last year, established three "school zones" in areas where there are no schools OR school children, as a clever way to set up speed cameras and then send out the tickets at higher rates because a "school zone" was being violated.

I kid you not.

And as of 1/1/2009 NJ became the first state to require a boating safety course or similar certification for ALL boaters in NJ waters, including folks transiting across from the neighboring states. Either a NJ course, or one from your home state, no grandfathering no age exemptions.

When in doubt with tax authorities, the safest course is to ask them for an official advisory opinion, which may be worthless when a new commissioner or new policy comes into effect the next year anyway.

They're all getting very very hungry with all the budget shortfalls, it is not paranoid to assume they'll try to find new ways to get revenue, or higher rates, in the next year or two.
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Old 02-02-2010
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Originally Posted by hellosailor View Post
Maryland is the state which, last year, established three "school zones" in areas where there are no schools OR school children, as a clever way to set up speed cameras and then send out the tickets at higher rates because a "school zone" was being violated.
While I also disagree with this practice, I think you are stretching the truth by saying that Maryland created these. Actually it is the municipalities, not the state, that are collecting the revenue.

Here in PA municipalities were banned from using radar detectors and cameras for decades. It's only within the last year or two that the state allowed municipalities to use them, but the state takes such a huge piece of the action that there is no profit in it for the municipalities. So the towns will only buy the equipment if there is a true safety hazard. This is one of the only things that the PA legislature has ever gotten right.

Quote:
Originally Posted by hellosailor View Post
And as of 1/1/2009 NJ became the first state to require a boating safety course or similar certification for ALL boaters in NJ waters, including folks transiting across from the neighboring states. Either a NJ course, or one from your home state, no grandfathering no age exemptions.
And what is wrong with this?

After reading Chapman's as a kid I never took one of these courses. However, just as a refresher, I completed the PA course two days ago. I did not realize that NJ required this for transient traffic. But it's a good thing I have it since I'll be on the Delaware River.

And it's a good thing for me that those other nut cases will have some training.
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Old 02-03-2010
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It is scientifically proven that sailors who keep their boats in a state's waters but fail to pay the proper tax to the state treasury are twice as likely to find themselves aground in a channel that has not been dredged for many years because..... drumroll please.... the state is short on funds to do the dredging in part because sailors who keep their boats in a state's waters have failed to pay the proper tax.

Paying a tax like this isn't much fun, but sailing is.

Enjoy not running aground. Its more fun to watch other people do so.
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  #16  
Old 05-04-2010
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Maryland Boat Tax

Blancke -- If the boat is in the water in Delaware for 183 and in the water in Maryland for 150, it should not be subject to tax, at least so long as you can prove to the State's satisfaction where the boat was. If it was out of the water in Delaware, I would be less certain. Either way, 150 Maryland days will put you at risk for being assessed, and will leave you in a position to have to prove that you are not taxable. 90 days or less would be safer.

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  #17  
Old 05-04-2010
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"And what is wrong with this?"
What is wrong with this may be nothing--but it conflicts with traditional rights of passage and navigation. While other states have demanded that their own boaters meet certain criteria, no other state has said "You may not enter our waters unless you have" some type of license or certification, which some states don't even issue!
Then there are federal issues to be raised, potentially including interference with interstate commerce or failure to recognize the laws of other states (i.e. states that require training only for youngsters, and grandfather in older boaters.)
Do I think boaters should have some basic competencies? Sure. Do I think NJ has the right to raise an iron curtain on their waters? No. If they want federal boater competency, let them do it through the fed. (Oh, wait, DHS wants to do that anyway...)
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