Canadian resident registering boat in US. Duty question - SailNet Community

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Old 06-01-2012
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Canadian resident registering boat in US. Duty question

Hello

I'm hoping someone can help me with this question

We are in bit of a unique situation because we live in the Yukon and sail in Alaska

We have to register our boat there or leave US waters every 90 days. Obviously with a sailboat this doesn't work

The new boat we are thinking of buying is registered in Washington state and is a US flagged vessel

We were told my Canada customs that we would have to pay duty and GST on the boat when we cross the border into BC enroute to Alaska, and import the boat

This makes no sense to me, as it will go to Alaska to be registered and used there

We heard that they we a temporary transit form that can be used called From E 99. But when I talk to customs I get vague answers like it is up to the discretion of the officer whether we can use this

This situation would apply if we ever transitted back though Candian waters later, enroute to the US

Anyone have any insights on this?

I am a dual US/Canadian citizen and am able to also US document the boat, if that would help

Any thoughts?


Thanks

Ykmaggie
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Old 06-01-2012
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Re: Canadian resident registering boat in US. Duty question

If it's a North American built boat there will be no duty, but there would be taxes. If it's euro or Asian built then duty would apply. BUT... none of that should matter until you actually import the boat, so I guess it's going to come down to the definition of 'importing' (I'd hope that involved actually registering or licensing the boat, as opposed to 'passing through')


With your dual citizenship you can be an 'American' passing through Canadian waters, n'est pas?
Or....
Ask Jackdale to help you sail it from WA to Alaska around the outside!!
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Re: Canadian resident registering boat in US. Duty question

Hi Faster

Its a Tashiba 31, so built in Taiwan. There is no State tax in Alaska

But I'm not importing it to Canada, it's already been imported to the US, and we would simply be taking it to Alaska. Why the Canadian government also feels I need to import it to take it there is beyond me. As an American flagged vessel, sailed by an American citizen, I don't understand why we would be treated any differently than visiting boats from the US in Canadian waters. The customs person said is was because our residence is in Canada, despite the fact that boat will be kept in the UAS
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Re: Canadian resident registering boat in US. Duty question

Pt Roberts WA is a popular marina for lower mainland Canadian boaters.. but I believe the boats there (Canadian ones, that is) are registered or licenced in Canada. So they would have paid taxes etc, and need only clear customs in and out as usual.

Not sure how you're going to get 'around' the residency issue.. interesting.
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Re: Canadian resident registering boat in US. Duty question

We bought our boat in Detriot and had to transit the Welland Canal. We were told by Canada Customs that we too would have to import the boat and pay the taxes. With the help of a local marina manager we were able to get special permission to transit the canal without importing the boat and thus avoiding the taxes. If you take the inside passage you will be in Canadian waters for quite some time where as we were in the canal for only a few hours (8 I think). You may be able to get a temporary work form that will allow you to have work done on your boat in Canada. Then you will have to return the boat to the US. This might work for you and would be worth investigating. You enter Canada from Washington State. Have some work done and then return to the US only this time to Alaska. I cannot give you form numbers but Canada customs issue these exemptions on a regular basis. It's worth a shot.
My first question to Canada Customs would be, as an American citizen what do I have to do to transit through Canadian waters. As an American you do not have to import the boat.

Last edited by ebs001; 06-01-2012 at 03:03 PM.
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Re: Canadian resident registering boat in US. Duty question

Hi ebs

The customs people told me the fact that I am a dual citizen makes no difference, it is because we reside in Canada that we have to pay the taxes and import the boat
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Re: Canadian resident registering boat in US. Duty question

Quote:
Originally Posted by ykmaggie View Post
Hi ebs

The customs people told me the fact that I am a dual citizen makes no difference, it is because we reside in Canada that we have to pay the taxes and import the boat
That is my understanding. Some friends had a US registered boat that they kept in Anacortes; they could not bring it to Canada. Another had his Canadian registered boat in Point Roberts; no problems.

WA to AK on the outside - ouch; against wind and current, and cold.
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Re: Canadian resident registering boat in US. Duty question

ykm, so try the "having work done" route. Another way is to hire a US captain, actually any nationality but Canadian and he doesn't have to be a captain, to deliver the boat and don't take ownership until it's delivered to Alaska.
Canada Customs has some strange rules. Another frustrating rule is that, as a Canadian, you cannot rent a car in the US and drive it into Canada. In fact you cannot drive someone elses car.
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Re: Canadian resident registering boat in US. Duty question

Thank guys

I might end up having to do that. I have a American captain that would be able to do it for us. I just wanted to have the experience sailing it up here. We can always go along. I have emailed our MLA and asked him to get clarification on the form E 99 for temporary transit
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Re: Canadian resident registering boat in US. Duty question

Ok, the other thing I wondered about this residency thing, is what if I say we live half time in Alaska, on the boat?? We have a monthly shore power bill for our current boat to show we are there. Long shot I guess
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