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Old 05-11-2015, 15:26   #1
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Buying a Washington Registered Boat in BC

I'm considering looking at a boat that is owned by Canadians and is in Victoria BC but still has a just a Washington state registration. I assume it has a Washington title as well. It is not US documented or Canadian registered. Would I just execute a bill of sale and have them sign off the title and just sail back across the border? What about customs?

I was also wondering how long a Canadian can keep a foreign boat there without registering it?
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Old 08-11-2015, 13:06   #2
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Re: Buying a Washington Registered Boat in BC

I might be in a similar sort of predicament, if I buy a boat in Canada, then transit through the US or along the Eastern Seaboard to the Gulf to exit US waters.

The no visa 90 day arrangement (in my case) won't cover eventualities, so what I plan to do (so far, this may have to change, but it seems good at the moment), is take a Red Ensign with me, buy the boat, register immediately with the UK Small Ships Register (25 quid for 5 years), print out the paperwork (may have to wait for my kid sister to express deliver the originals once received), do the necessary SSR changes (carved woodwork and painting), then use an over 90 day visa to transit the US, which will allow for delays for any necessary servicing, repairs, replacements, antifouling, etc., before jumping offshore in the Gulf.

This should get you started:

https://help.cbp.gov/app/answers/det...tering-the-u.s.
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Old 08-11-2015, 13:25   #3
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Re: Buying a Washington Registered Boat in BC

Quote:
Originally Posted by Sand crab View Post
I'm considering looking at a boat that is owned by Canadians and is in Victoria BC but still has a just a Washington state registration. I assume it has a Washington title as well. It is not US documented or Canadian registered. Would I just execute a bill of sale and have them sign off the title and just sail back across the border? What about customs?

I was also wondering how long a Canadian can keep a foreign boat there without registering it?
A Canadian cannot bring a boat into Canada without paying HST and duty (if applicable) except to work on it. It cannot be used for pleasure. Some Canadians have snuck boats into Canada but if a customs officer walks the docks and sees it the owner will have some explaining to do.

I would check the details re title and registration very carefully. If you do buy the boat and return to Washington you will have to clear customs. Of course they will want your entry number when the boat checked into Canada.
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Old 08-11-2015, 13:42   #4
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Re: Buying a Washington Registered Boat in BC

If the boat is over 30 ft long, this (about the Decal / Transponder Online Procurement System - DTOP) should prove useful too (and if pre registered in the US, the boat should be in the system I suppose):

https://dtops.cbp.dhs.gov/main/login...FxMqS!53944461
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Old 08-11-2015, 13:47   #5
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Re: Buying a Washington Registered Boat in BC

If the boat has not been BC registered and has a good WA title, I would think you could finalize the sale in WA State. Have the owner bring it down to Point Roberts or etc. for the final step; transfer of ownership, payment etc after actually seeing the title and so on.
What I don't understand though is that I'm not sure the title can be in the BC owners name in WA.....?
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Old 09-11-2015, 12:23   #6
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Re: Buying a Washington Registered Boat in BC

I asked if he could bring the boat to the US side which is only about 25 miles but he said he's in the Canadian military and won't be back for 7 months. It is a liveaboard and his wife is not much of a sailor so we are stuck. Perhaps she's the US citizen because I think you have to have a Washington drivers license to register a vehicle and boats are similarly classed. I haven't looked at it yet in person but it is a PIA already.
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Old 09-11-2015, 13:38   #7
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Re: Buying a Washington Registered Boat in BC

Canadians can register boats in the US and elsewhere. Vasco is absolutely correct, there are serious ramifications for bringing the boat into Canada.

A Canadian cannot even charter a boat in the San Juans and then visit the Gulf Islands.

Tread very carefully on this one.
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