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Old 09-02-2014, 10:04   #1
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American Boat Canadian Waters

Hi

Can anyone provide comment on what the rules are for an American flagged boat in CAD waters. I am a dual (CAD/US) citizen with 2 passports and would like to spend some time up in BC and was wondering on the limits of stay. I realize that I can be there forever as a citizen but if my boat is flagged US am I limited to 6 months or shorter? Can I set sail back to the San Juans and reenter? Any time length that the boat has to be out of CAD waters. I do not want to import the boat and all that tax grabbing non sense.

Thank you and appreciate all replies.

Tim
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Old 09-02-2014, 10:27   #2
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Re: American boat Canadian Waters

A US citizen in a US boat is allowed 6 months in Canadian waters. We do not having cruising permits like the US. I know one US citizen that got 3 - 6 month extensions before they got tired of him and gave him 24hrs to get out.

Revenue Canada has no rules governing your specific situation and it would be left to the customs agent on site who could make a very good case for a Canadian owned boat owing taxes/duties as soon as it hits Canadian water .... not a discussion I'd want to have with an illiterate 22yr old with a gun.
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Old 09-02-2014, 10:36   #3
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Re: American boat Canadian Waters

I should clarify that my residence is US and it would be an American owned vessel. The only thing is different is the dual citizenship. I know they cant kick me out but I think they can kick the boat out or declare it an import. 6 months is fine I was just curious if I wanted to stay longer was that possible.
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Old 09-02-2014, 10:47   #4
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Re: American boat Canadian Waters

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Originally Posted by Sailing Cowboy View Post
I should clarify that my residence is US and it would be an American owned vessel. The only thing is different is the dual citizenship. I know they cant kick me out but I think they can kick the boat out or declare it an import. 6 months is fine I was just curious if I wanted to stay longer was that possible.
I doubt a Canada Customs agent on site would be willing to take your side of that argument ... I'm Canadian but not really I'm also American and I don't own the boat as a Canadian, I own it as an American

He could quite reasonably make the case that it's a boat owned by a Canadian. If he disagrees with you, you lose.

I'd get a ruling from Customs in writing (wait a minute, they won't give it to you in writing) before I touched Canadian water.
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Old 09-02-2014, 17:27   #5
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Re: American Boat Canadian Waters

I guess I complicated the question too much. I have no problem clearing Canadian customs with an American flagged boat as I am an American with clear ties to US residency. My question related to how long I can stay in the BC islands and I believe that answer to be 6 months.
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Old 09-02-2014, 17:57   #6
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Re: American Boat Canadian Waters

This is the best that I could find. Max six months or less at the desecration of border services. Nothing about boats and length of stay for them. It seems odd that they are not clearer about this issue.
Prepare for arrival—Visit Canada
Pat's Boating in Canada: Entering Canada by boat
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Old 09-02-2014, 18:25   #7
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Re: American Boat Canadian Waters

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Originally Posted by Heart of Gold View Post
This is the best that I could find. Max six months or less at the desecration of border services. Nothing about boats and length of stay for them. It seems odd that they are not clearer about this issue.
Prepare for arrival—Visit Canada
Pat's Boating in Canada: Entering Canada by boat
Thank you. Very helpful indeed.
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Old 09-02-2014, 18:50   #8
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Re: American Boat Canadian Waters

Go for a 6 month entry into Canada, then get a work order showing repairs required on your boat. They should issue you an E-99 document allowing you to remain for another 6 months. I'm surprised they are not more clear on these details as Canada can use the sales tax revenue!!
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Old 09-02-2014, 19:00   #9
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Re: American Boat Canadian Waters

hey - this is a tricky one, and I suspect it depends almost entirely on who the admitting officer is on the day. Do you file a tax return in Canada already? (if you're Canadian by birth and have a legal residence here then I think you're obliged to, no?).

I was told pretty straight up by the officers at border services the marine division in Halifax that if you are Canadian, and you bring a boat that is owned or can be demonstrated to be substantially owned by you, then you will have to pay import taxes on that vessel when it clears in to the first Canadian port. Taxes are on invoice value of vessel - HST (15% in Nova Scotia), plus 9.5% import duty if the boat was built anywhere other than NAFTA - US/Can/Mexico. big numbers.

On the other hand, I do know of a Canadian, who formed a US company with a silent US partner (a friendly attorney) to buy, register and operate a boat specifically to avoid paying these taxes when he brought the boat to Canada. ~$1500 to form the company, a grand or so a year in fees, and he was (at least for a few years - haven't spoken with him recently) able to avoid over a hundred g's of taxes... but he could only keep the boat in Canada for 6 months at a time. he cleared in and out several times wiht this setup that I am aware of.

hope that helps-

bg
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Old 18-02-2014, 01:29   #10
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Re: American Boat Canadian Waters

I would suggest you only bring your USA passport. You have to report in and out of both customs. Boats over 30' require a "user fee decal". There is a CANPASS and NEXUS (recommended)program for frequent pre approved people. Meaning all people on board. Both make it much easier. You can call ahead. It's easier to do customs in Nanaimo that Vancouver or Victoria. Somehow commercial fishermen going thru Canadian waters without stops are allowed.
You get 6 months. You can apply for an extension. They are worried about Americans taking Canadian jobs, not Americans spending money in Canada. People that cause trouble don't get extensions as easily as those that don't. Leave your pistol with friends. Sporting guns are no problem. Big magazines are. You can pre register guns.
If I don't go further south, I like to winter in Canada and cruise Alaska in the summer. I have had no trouble and found Canadian customs, etc., to be friendly, helpful people. American customs, too.
I bought this boat in Canada. A US built, Canadian flagged at the time. I had no customs problems.
You can get detailed info on the internet.
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Old 18-02-2014, 18:12   #11
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Re: American Boat Canadian Waters

Quote:
Originally Posted by bgallinger View Post
Go for a 6 month entry into Canada, then get a work order showing repairs required on your boat. They should issue you an E-99 document allowing you to remain for another 6 months. I'm surprised they are not more clear on these details as Canada can use the sales tax revenue!!
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Old 18-02-2014, 18:16   #12
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Re: American Boat Canadian Waters

Quote:
Originally Posted by Lepke View Post
I would suggest you only bring your USA passport. You have to report in and out of both customs. Boats over 30' require a "user fee decal". There is a CANPASS and NEXUS (recommended)program for frequent pre approved people. Meaning all people on board. Both make it much easier. You can call ahead. It's easier to do customs in Nanaimo that Vancouver or Victoria. Somehow commercial fishermen going thru Canadian waters without stops are allowed.
You get 6 months. You can apply for an extension. They are worried about Americans taking Canadian jobs, not Americans spending money in Canada. People that cause trouble don't get extensions as easily as those that don't. Leave your pistol with friends. Sporting guns are no problem. Big magazines are. You can pre register guns.
If I don't go further south, I like to winter in Canada and cruise Alaska in the summer. I have had no trouble and found Canadian customs, etc., to be friendly, helpful people. American customs, too.
I bought this boat in Canada. A US built, Canadian flagged at the time. I had no customs problems.
You can get detailed info on the internet.
Lepke
Good information. Thank you. As I get closer to point of arrival I will research whether a "call in" is all that is required or an actual physical presence at say Nanaimo CBP. Thanks again to everyone.
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Old 19-02-2014, 17:22   #13
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Re: American Boat Canadian Waters

Check out http://www.great-lakes-sailing.com/Great Lakes Sailing Guide
They have a pretty extensive article on cross-border regulations for recreational boaters
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Old 19-02-2014, 21:39   #14
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Re: American Boat Canadian Waters

You may require the equivalent of a Pleasure Craft Operator's Card

Quote:
Do the Competency of Operators of Pleasure Craft Regulations apply to non-residents?

The Regulations apply to non-residents if:

They operate their pleasure craft in Canadian waters for more than 44 consecutive days or,
They operate a pleasure craft that is licensed or registered in Canada (including rented or chartered boats).
The Regulations do not apply to non-residents who operate their pleasure craft (licensed in a country other than Canada) in Canadian waters for less than 45 consecutive days. Please note that a proof of residence will be required on board at all times.

If you require more information on how Canadian requirements apply to non-residents visit the Requirements for Foreign Recreational Boaters In Canadian Waters.
Operator Card (PCOC) - FAQ - Transport Canada
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Old 19-02-2014, 21:42   #15
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Re: American Boat Canadian Waters

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Originally Posted by Sailing Cowboy View Post
Good information. Thank you. As I get closer to point of arrival I will research whether a "call in" is all that is required or an actual physical presence at say Nanaimo CBP. Thanks again to everyone.
Clear at Victoria, Bedwell or Sidney. Nanaimo is a fair hike.

You can "call in" from some customs docks.

Start here for information:

https://www.tc.gc.ca/eng/marinesafet...sitor-1610.htm
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