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Old 14-02-2008, 19:01   #1
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Buying and Sailing in Canada, then Importing into the US

I am a US citizen, considering buying a new sailing catamaran (32') in Canada, saiing the Great Lakes for a season, laying up in Canada for the winter and then, sailing to the US where the boat will be registered. I'd like to register in Rhode Island since I understand there is no sales tax there. I'll be living aboard during the summers and living in VT during the winters.

How could this work? My understanding is that the boat has to physicaly be in the state when it's registered. So if I wanted to cruise in Canada before bringing the boat to the US, the boat would presumably be unregistered for a season or 2. Would the Canadian authorities want the boat to be registered?

Any problems registering in Rhode Island if my home address is in VT.

Ron James
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Old 17-02-2008, 14:54   #2
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Location: Newport, OR/Pocatello, ID
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Your best source of information is the particular state's website. My experience is that I have a boat registered in Oregon but my legal residence is in Idaho--no problems. (Insurance has been another story.)No one ever would have known if the boat was in Oregon when I registered it. I am sure that you're asking for trouble if you use it unregistered. Hope this helps.
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Old 17-02-2008, 16:21   #3
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I bought my boat in Canada documented it in MT, sailed it in Canada for a year, have it in OR now and am going to pass thru CA on the way to Mexico. BTW I am a CA resident. Different states have different requirements. Also Canada has some pretty strict tax rules as well. It takes research to make sure that you obey all the tax laws of every jurisdiction.
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