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Old 02-09-2009, 09:41   #1
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Overseas Citizen, US Boat. What Does it Take?

This is something I would like opinions on. The info would be helpful for others as well. I know I've seen quite a few boats with registry from other countries, so I wondered what was required on both ends to keep the boat here that was purchased in the US and the owner is a citizen in another country.

Let's use Florida as the location state for the boat in the example. The citizens country is an EU country.
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Old 02-09-2009, 09:58   #2
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The boat needs a registered title some place so the owner can prove ownership. A bill of sale is not a registered title. The skipper and crew need proper passports and are restricted to how long they can stay and / work based on the normal requirements if they just ended up here off an airplane. Arriving on or owning a boat means nothing. The people are just aliens in the US.

The key is the boat is not a person so it's not related to the person that owns it. It is a illegal for a non US citizen to document a boat with the USCG. If it was formerly documented it must be undocumented. They can register it in any state that cares to have them. They can also register it outside the US and get a 6 month all you can cruise US permit. Just in case there is a dinghy it's just a second boat and all the rules apply to it as there are no two for one deals on a dinghy with a bigger boat. No one cares about a dinghy if it has no engine. You just need to have PFD and all safety gear required for any boat based on length.

Boats are US state regulated even though there are USCG requirements some states have extra goodies. The final issue of taxes is more complex.
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Old 02-09-2009, 10:27   #3
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Ok making sure I am clear. In this scenario the individual would want to leave the boat in FL permanently and fly in during "season" or on holiday to stay on and cruise their boat. STANDARD Visa rules apply, registration will be in the "home country". The boat is up to USCG safety standards (it was a US boat prior to purchase). Is their anything else that would need to be done, regarding the boat, no "extra" paperwork for the US Gov?
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Old 02-09-2009, 10:37   #4
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The cruising permit is good for one year, not six months.
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Old 02-09-2009, 10:43   #5
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So maybe its a little complex to own a boat and keep it in Fl and just sail it on vacation, but what about a UK or EU citizen keeping / registering in Brit Bahamas or BVI or other Brit /EU carib islands? What would the rules be then?
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Old 02-09-2009, 10:45   #6
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Anj: Ahh there's a thot! That was something I was referring to in the "Formosa" thread about being in territories...

So then the cruising permit is what is required for the boat to remain in US waters at a rented slip? How much "break" time is required between permits?
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Old 02-09-2009, 10:50   #7
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from the Formosa thread....

Anj (cont):
That's what i was considering to give you options at purchase. A place to leave her til she or you were ready for transport, passage, or your retirement! Also, a way to spread out expenditures over time so as not to have to "dump the wad" at one time on all the requirements....
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Old 02-09-2009, 10:52   #8
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Anj: Ahh there's a thot! That was something I was referring to in the "Formosa" thread about being in territories...

So then the cruising permit is what is required for the boat to remain in US waters at a rented slip? How much "break" time is required between permits?
This is a good question and I have gotten different answers from different Homeland Security people. I know that even if you leave the US and return with an existing cruising permit they will not give you a new one. Your old one must expire before they issue a new one. Many snowbirds that lleave their boats in the US and spend the winters in the Bahamas ask for a cruising permit of less than one year, usually ten months. That way when they return in May or June the permit will have expired and they get a new one.
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Old 02-09-2009, 10:54   #9
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What would the rules be then?
I would think your home rules would apply. But you would'n't have to transport it immediately. Easy holiday to go and work on her with no Visa hassles...
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Old 02-09-2009, 10:57   #10
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This is a good question and I have gotten different answers from different Homeland Security people. I know that even if you leave the US and return with an existing cruising permit they will not give you a new one. Your old one must expire before they issue a new one. Many snowbirds that lleave their boats in the US and spend the winters in the Bahamas ask for a cruising permit of less than one year, usually ten months. That way when they return in May or June the permit will have expired and they get a new one.
The issue I was trying to determine was whether the vessel or the people had to leave. Does the "cruising permit" really apply here? As they are flying in and already Visa'd, I don't think that it would be applicable in this case.
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Old 02-09-2009, 10:59   #11
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So maybe its a little complex to own a boat and keep it in Fl and just sail it on vacation, but what about a UK or EU citizen keeping / registering in Brit Bahamas or BVI or other Brit /EU carib islands? What would the rules be then?
There is no Brit Bahamas. Bahamas is an independent nation. UK citizens are subject to the same rules as other foreigners.
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Old 02-09-2009, 11:02   #12
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Once we owned the world but what with the recent trend towards giving territories back to the natives, I dont know which islands are still sovereign territory and as such, where I could stay as long as I wished. If it were possible to live in a Cayman type UK protectorate in the sun (no taxes) etc then purchasing a cheaper and better found US boat and moving her 500 ish miles would make the best sense of all. That way the boat becomes at least like a vacation home in the sun and at best, acheiving the liveaboard cruising dream.
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Old 02-09-2009, 11:08   #13
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Independant eh? So we continue to take all the immigrants but I cant go live there. Obviously, as per usual, its one sided. Ho hum, got to think of another way to get my tan. I do need a tan as you can see.
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Old 02-09-2009, 11:20   #14
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Ho hum, got to think of another way to get my tan. I do need a tan as you can see.
Try Abergele, I hear it's great this time of the year.
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Old 02-09-2009, 11:23   #15
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Yeah, I could take my bikini consisting of a s'ouwester and wellies.
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