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Old 27-07-2017, 09:45   #1
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Non-EU boat owners on VAT tax payment and registration

Hey guys, I am Serbian nationality and we are not part of EU. Me and my wife are looking into buying a boat in Greece/Croatia/Italy and have narrowed our shortlist to around 10 boats. Problem is that couple of boats have "VAT tax not payed" status on them. We as Serbian citizens can't register our boat in our country of origin as they require it to be present on spot, which is not possible for us - boat would be kept in Aegean, bringing it back to RS would require difficult and long ride up the Danube from Black Sea. We plan to cruise around Med extensively in next couple of years and would change countries, not sure if we will have a problem with this and if registering a boat in Delaware would solve our problem. Any other idea is appreciated. Thanks!
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Old 01-08-2017, 10:30   #2
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Re: Non-EU boat owners on VAT tax payment and registration

You will certainly have to flag or register your boat.
You will then be limited in time as an non EU boat to the amount of time spent in EU waters and periodically i.e. every 6 months or so have to leave EU waters for a few days to reset your cruising clock. Turkey and Tunisia are obvious Med places.
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Old 01-08-2017, 10:41   #3
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Re: Non-EU boat owners on VAT tax payment and registration

Many places you could register the boat but some of them have their own tax requirements so be careful and that won't relieve you of VAT. VAT will be dependent on the time you spend in the EU. I would suggest you get in touch with a documentation agency and talk to them about your exact situation. They can fill you in with all the pitfalls and what will work.
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Old 01-08-2017, 12:08   #4
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Re: Non-EU boat owners on VAT tax payment and registration

A US state registration may cause problems when entering countries in the Med, whose officials will be expecting a national registration.

A US national registration requires US citizens.
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Old 01-08-2017, 13:05   #5
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Re: Non-EU boat owners on VAT tax payment and registration

You are mixing registration and taxes which are not the same thing. VAT is payable at the point of sale, in this case you. It is paid by the vendor probably a boat charter company in this case. Just to confirm this you do not pay VAT the vendor (seller) does. Whether the seller will sell you a boat and pay the tax for the price its advertised at is a different question and they could be using the ruse as a way of advertising the yacht cheaper than other yachts.

As for the registration, could you register her in Greece or one of the other former Yugoslavia countries?

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Old 01-08-2017, 14:53   #6
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Re: Non-EU boat owners on VAT tax payment and registration

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You are mixing registration and taxes which are not the same thing. VAT is payable at the point of sale, in this case you. It is paid by the vendor probably a boat charter company in this case. Just to confirm this you do not pay VAT the vendor (seller) does. Whether the seller will sell you a boat and pay the tax for the price its advertised at is a different question and they could be using the ruse as a way of advertising the yacht cheaper than other yachts.

As for the registration, could you register her in Greece or one of the other former Yugoslavia countries?

Pete
There are actually plenty of boats on sale in the EU with "VAT not paid". If its a EU charter company than your point is very much valid. But there are also boats in the EU that don't fly a EU flag and as such are also in most cases advertised with "VAT not paid" They sail the EU waters under the 18 months VAT exemption rule and leave the EU for a day or two and come back for a new 18 moths.
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Old 01-08-2017, 15:13   #7
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Re: Non-EU boat owners on VAT tax payment and registration

True, but sell one of these yachts within the EU and you the vendor are liable for VAT.

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Old 02-08-2017, 07:20   #8
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Re: Non-EU boat owners on VAT tax payment and registration

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True, but sell one of these yachts within the EU and you the vendor are liable for VAT.

Pete
If you are a EU entity yes but not if either the seller or the boat belongs within the EU.

In this case its the buyers responsibility to import the boat into EU and pay VAT if he chooses to flag it under EU flag.

Anyway back to the original post;

If you want to register the boat in EU, I know for a fact that you can register under Dutch flag, no questions asked about boats VAT status also you yourself don't need to be a EU citizen. But thats a risky business one I would not recommend. Once you run into a custom officer in the EU with questions concerning the boats VAT status you will be in dire straits.

The other way is to register outside of EU and take advantage of the 18 month exemption that foreign boats have in EU waters.
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Old 02-08-2017, 07:30   #9
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Re: Non-EU boat owners on VAT tax payment and registration

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If you are a EU entity yes but not if either the seller or the boat belongs within the EU.
You mean outside the EU surely?

Quote:
Originally Posted by SnakeEyes View Post
In this case its the buyers responsibility to import the boat into EU and pay VAT if he chooses to flag it under EU flag.
The OP wants to buy a yacht in Greece.

Quote:
Originally Posted by SnakeEyes View Post
Anyway back to the original post;

If you want to register the boat in EU, I know for a fact that you can register under Dutch flag, no questions asked about boats VAT status also you yourself don't need to be a EU citizen. But thats a risky business one I would not recommend. Once you run into a custom officer in the EU with questions concerning the boats VAT status you will be in dire straits.

The other way is to register outside of EU and take advantage of the 18 month exemption that foreign boats have in EU waters.
Register where?

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Old 02-08-2017, 10:18   #10
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Re: Non-EU boat owners on VAT tax payment and registration

Repeat: Contact a documentation service in the area that can give you all the ins and outs and protect you. Advice here might be almost accurate but that's not enough and the reason for "almost" is that no one here knows your exact situation and no two situations are the same. One seemingly very small piece of information can change a lot. For example, not just where the boat is currently documented but where it might have been in the past.
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Old 02-08-2017, 10:44   #11
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Re: Non-EU boat owners on VAT tax payment and registration

You'll need to take delivery of a VAT not paid boat outside the EU in order to avoid the VAT. No way around it, just arrange with the seller. Not difficult. Montenegro, Turkey, Tunisia, Albania, Bulgaria, UK in a year of two, Channel Islands, Gibraltar, Morocco.

Why not register your boat in Delaware with a US flag like so many of the Turkish boats?
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