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Old 19-09-2012, 12:10   #16
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Re: UK resident buying in USA

Lots of countries have easy registration. Panama is very popular. If you're not going to take it to Europe and only be in the states occasionally then why not. There are many marine title companies which do this for you if it's a private sale. Otherwise a good broker should be familiar with this.
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Old 19-09-2012, 12:13   #17
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Re: UK resident buying in USA

Quote:
Originally Posted by Vasco View Post
Cruising permits only can be issued for pleasure boats flagged in certain countries, not all countries..
Here's the list.

Argentina
Australia
Austria
Bahamas
Belgium
Bermuda
Canada
Denmark
Finland
France
Germany
Greece
Honduras
Ireland
Italy
Jamaica
Liberia
Marshall Islands
Netherlands
New Zealand
Norway
Saint Kitts and Nevis
Saint Vincent and the Grenadines
Sweden
Switzerland
Turkey
United Kingdom and the Dependencies
the Anguilla Islands
the Isle of Man
the British Virgin Islands
the Cayman Islandsthe Turks and Caicos Islands
I can't figure why that accept some EU countries and not others. e.g. Spain is not on the list.

Discrimination ?
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Old 19-09-2012, 12:48   #18
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Re: UK Resident Buying in USA

I have bought two US boats, a Sabre 38, and a Little Harbor 46. There are plenty of low quality boats in the US but the good boats are very good. I am also a UK person, and the problem of reimport to the Uk shouldnt be underestimated. VAT is one thing, and will not happen until you enter the EU, and the rate will depend on where that is. My LH was imported through Spain by its previous owner, and whilst the rate of VAT was 20%, the value agreed was 15000 EUR, you cant get a LH for anywhere close to that! The real problem however is the ridiculous EU rules on importing a Recreational Craft, as it ios termed. The start price for a survey to meet the requirements is anything north of 7000EUR, and then the cost of complying will depend on the boat type, re engining just for an example. If the boat was European built then many of these problems can be solved. The EU RCD as it is called is ablatant trade protection issue!
However, if you want to cruise the Carib, why not buy there? The market in places like BVI or St Martin/Marten has loads of boats.
And finally, beware if buying then cruising in the states, any non US person travelling in a boat MUST have a visa issued at an embassy outside the US, visa waivers do not apply, and you have to report every movement within the States ( after a while they tell you to just advise them when you leave their particular State!) Having said that, the Eastern seaboard is a great cruising ground. People are freindly, like the guy that just tossed us his car keys when we asked if there were food shops nearby, there were, but ten miles up the freeway!
One final thing, beware also if you want to visit the fabulous cruising area and lovely people of Cuba, the USCG have immense powers to stop you!
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Old 19-09-2012, 18:17   #19
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Re: UK Resident Buying in USA

  1. I would advise that you don't need a title company. State registration is easy.
  2. If the boat you are buying is USCG Documented (Federally registered), it is the seller's responsibility to de-register it. You can't do it and you should make that a condition of sale in your contract, specifying the time frame with the phrase "time is of the essence". I'm not an attorney but that is a legal phrase in the US which means the deal hinges on timing as a material factor; and you should also hold back some money in escrow (with a trusted 3rd party that is not the sellers representative) to make sure he performs. You don't want to get hung up if the seller is lazy or indifferent. That said, it is very easy (one simple form to file with Coast Guard) and I did it when I sold my last boat. After you send in the form, you receive a case number. The process takes about a week or two to get a case number and then about 4-6 weeks until the change is official. You can meanwhile sail the boat once you have a case number, that is evidence of intent to comply with the regulations (it's illegal for a non-citizen to operate a US-flagged vessel) and nobody will hang you out to dry for it unless you do something else to offend them.
  3. You don't need to physically have the boat in the state to register it there. Rhode Island doesn't require you to be a resident either. You just need to go to the motor vehicle department and fill out the forms and pay the (small) fees. However it might be better to register it either as a UK or perhaps Panama vessel -- something to look into.
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Old 19-09-2012, 22:10   #20
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Re: UK resident buying in USA

Quote:
Originally Posted by skipmac View Post
An advantage to registration in Florida. Sales and use tax only 6-7% (varies by county) and no yearly property tax.

Fee for the registration depending on the age and value of the boat would only be $50-$200 range per year.
Thanks for that info, I guess we will seriously consider Florida as a State to register in then, unless we find a boat in RI or BVI.
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Old 19-09-2012, 22:21   #21
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Re: UK resident buying in USA

Quote:
Originally Posted by savoir View Post
I can't figure why that accept some EU countries and not others. e.g. Spain is not on the list.

Discrimination ?
I gather from this then, that if we, as non-residents, buy a boat and register it in say Florida, we can't or won't need to get a cruising permit. As British passport holders we would enter the US on the visa waiver program, which would entitle us to a 3 month stay. That would roughly coincide with the 90 day period we would have to leave Florida with the vessel in order to comply with the 6% tax avoidance? If we then return after being away from Florida for at least 6 months I guess we would be issued a "sailor's" visa when we announce our arrival at a port in the US?
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Old 19-09-2012, 22:26   #22
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Re: UK Resident Buying in USA

Quote:
Originally Posted by Tim Godber View Post
I have bought two US boats, a Sabre 38, and a Little Harbor 46. There are plenty of low quality boats in the US but the good boats are very good. I am also a UK person, and the problem of reimport to the Uk shouldnt be underestimated. VAT is one thing, and will not happen until you enter the EU, and the rate will depend on where that is. My LH was imported through Spain by its previous owner, and whilst the rate of VAT was 20%, the value agreed was 15000 EUR, you cant get a LH for anywhere close to that! The real problem however is the ridiculous EU rules on importing a Recreational Craft, as it ios termed. The start price for a survey to meet the requirements is anything north of 7000EUR, and then the cost of complying will depend on the boat type, re engining just for an example. If the boat was European built then many of these problems can be solved. The EU RCD as it is called is ablatant trade protection issue!
However, if you want to cruise the Carib, why not buy there? The market in places like BVI or St Martin/Marten has loads of boats.
And finally, beware if buying then cruising in the states, any non US person travelling in a boat MUST have a visa issued at an embassy outside the US, visa waivers do not apply, and you have to report every movement within the States ( after a while they tell you to just advise them when you leave their particular State!) Having said that, the Eastern seaboard is a great cruising ground. People are freindly, like the guy that just tossed us his car keys when we asked if there were food shops nearby, there were, but ten miles up the freeway!
One final thing, beware also if you want to visit the fabulous cruising area and lovely people of Cuba, the USCG have immense powers to stop you!
Can a sailor not announce his arrival at a US port and be issued a clearance/visa to remain at all from US customs/immigration?
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Old 19-09-2012, 22:30   #23
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Re: UK resident buying in USA

Quote:
Originally Posted by Sand crab View Post
Lots of countries have easy registration. Panama is very popular. If you're not going to take it to Europe and only be in the states occasionally then why not. There are many marine title companies which do this for you if it's a private sale. Otherwise a good broker should be familiar with this.
With all the red tape and exorbitant costs associated with taking a boat to the EU and registering it there, I have no doubt we will not try that at all. I agree with another response that the "rules & regulations" & associated survey costs etc, are really just a guise to protect the EU market. Typical of Governments across the world wanting their bit of everyone's hard earned money.
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Old 19-09-2012, 22:32   #24
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Re: UK Resident Buying in USA

From some of the above (good) information, it makes me wonder whether, as a British (EU) citizen, if I genuinely sail my US registered boat to the Mediterranean simply with the intention of cruising for a few months, I might be stopped and charged VAT because they would want to make out that I was trying to "import" the boat? Has anyone ever experienced this?
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Old 19-09-2012, 22:41   #25
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Re: UK Resident Buying in USA

No, if you are on a private boat or plane, you must have a visa, and it can only be obtained ex US, we had to get ours issued at the US embassy Kingston Jamaica. Waiting outside at 7.00am with all the other hopefuls was quite the most dangerous part of our trip. If the boat is US registered, say Delaware, or as suggested RI rules may be different, but I doubt it because the visa applies to the person, and the boat is still a private one!
On an earlier post about exiting the US, there is one further formality which is to show the tax authorities that you arrived ex US, I forgot, and was chased with threars and penalties, however abject apology worked fine!
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Old 19-09-2012, 22:51   #26
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Re: UK Resident Buying in USA

Bluewater 2812, if you are simply cruising the Med, you are not importing, you may cruise EU for up to 18 months without doing the VAT/Import/EURCD routine. There is a slight doubt in my mind though because you are a British citizen, so am I but I am Jersey resident and my boat is Jersey registered ( yes, some Jersey registered boats are genuine) the EU resident that bought my US built Sabre is going through the VAT/EURCD route at some cost even though the boat remains on the Jersey register, this may be obligatory, or may be because he wants to!
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Old 20-09-2012, 00:10   #27
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Re: UK Resident Buying in USA

Quote:
Originally Posted by Tim Godber View Post
Bluewater 2812, if you are simply cruising the Med, you are not importing, you may cruise EU for up to 18 months without doing the VAT/Import/EURCD routine. There is a slight doubt in my mind though because you are a British citizen, so am I but I am Jersey resident and my boat is Jersey registered ( yes, some Jersey registered boats are genuine) the EU resident that bought my US built Sabre is going through the VAT/EURCD route at some cost even though the boat remains on the Jersey register, this may be obligatory, or may be because he wants to!
I guess because of the 18 month cruising allowance; as long as I can show that I have recently arrived in EU waters they can't try and make out that I intend to import the yacht until the 18 month period has passed?
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Old 20-09-2012, 00:14   #28
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Re: UK Resident Buying in USA

Quote:
Originally Posted by Tim Godber View Post
No, if you are on a private boat or plane, you must have a visa, and it can only be obtained ex US, we had to get ours issued at the US embassy Kingston Jamaica. Waiting outside at 7.00am with all the other hopefuls was quite the most dangerous part of our trip. If the boat is US registered, say Delaware, or as suggested RI rules may be different, but I doubt it because the visa applies to the person, and the boat is still a private one!
On an earlier post about exiting the US, there is one further formality which is to show the tax authorities that you arrived ex US, I forgot, and was chased with threars and penalties, however abject apology worked fine!
I guess quite a bit has changed then. I have a very good friend, who together with his brother, left South Africa on their yacht and arrived at various countries without visas and were simply given permission to stay by being met by a customs official.They also arrived in Hawaii, announced their arrival and and were given permission to stay (not sure for how long though). One of them had a South African passport at the time.
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Old 20-09-2012, 02:12   #29
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Re: UK Resident Buying in USA

This was 2005, so things may have changed!
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Old 20-09-2012, 02:31   #30
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Re: UK Resident Buying in USA

Things have changed. A Visa is required by the USA for any people arriving in the country by private vessel. This is a requirement even for citizens of countries that are part of the US Visa Waiver Program. I had to get a visa for this reason, so that I could sail from the BVI to the USVI.
To add to a mention of the cruising permit earlier in this thread, even with a cruising permit each and every boat movement (theoretically including just re-anchoring) requires that the permit holder call in to the nearest CBP office. I got a 10-page list of offices and telephone numbers that I think only covered the east coast of the USA. Fines for not adhering to this rule can be quite high and may also include deportation.
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