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Old 01-03-2019, 12:05   #1
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French Citizen, Permanent resident in Canada buying a french registered boat in US

Hey,
Looking for some info about registration in Canada.

I am a French citizen and permanent resident in BC Canada.

I have just sold my sailboat and looking at buying a French registered sailboat in California USA to bring back to Canada BC.

From what I understand, I have 2 options:

- Import the boat and get a Canadian registration, which seems really complicated and expensive with the duties, PST, and HST...
Anyone has ever imported a French boat into Canada and could give me more info?

- Or keep a French registration, which seems really easy and almost free, because the boat is more than 30 years old and has a 30HP engine only. However I am not sure how it works here, if I can keep a French boat permanently in Canada as a Canadian resident. Anyone has more info about that? I have all the requirement to operate a boat here in Canada and it doesn’t seem to be a problem to get insurance.

Concercing the title transfer in the US, from what I understand we need to do the paper while sailing offshore and ask for a new cruising permit in my name on our way back.



Any help would be greatly appreciated!
This is a complicated case and couldn’t get much info elsewhere.

Thanks in advance!
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Old 01-03-2019, 12:15   #2
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Re: French Citizen, Permanent resident in Canada buying a french registered boat in U

Quote:
Originally Posted by RobinBC View Post
Hey,
Looking for some info about registration in Canada.

I am a French citizen and permanent resident in BC Canada.

I have just sold my sailboat and looking at buying a French registered sailboat in California USA to bring back to Canada BC.

From what I understand, I have 2 options:

- Import the boat and get a Canadian registration, which seems really complicated and expensive with the duties, PST, and HST...
Anyone has ever imported a French boat into Canada and could give me more info?

- Or keep a French registration, which seems really easy and almost free, because the boat is more than 30 years old and has a 30HP engine only. However I am not sure how it works here, if I can keep a French boat permanently in Canada as a Canadian resident. Anyone has more info about that? I have all the requirement to operate a boat here in Canada and it doesn’t seem to be a problem to get insurance.

Concercing the title transfer in the US, from what I understand we need to do the paper while sailing offshore and ask for a new cruising permit in my name on our way back.



Any help would be greatly appreciated!
This is a complicated case and couldn’t get much info elsewhere.

Thanks in advance!


As a permanent resident Customs will be aware of what you are trying to do and have their hands out as soon as you land. There is no escape from the tax man in your situaion.

As a Transport Canada Appointed Tonnage Measurer and Licensed Master doing deliveries I get involved with this stuff frequently ..... You are beat.
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Old 01-03-2019, 12:19   #3
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Re: French Citizen, Permanent resident in Canada buying a french registered boat in U

Do you mean what I am trying to do is illegal? The person I want to buy the boat from is doing the same but in the US with no problem...
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Old 01-03-2019, 12:26   #4
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Re: French Citizen, Permanent resident in Canada buying a french registered boat in U

I encountered the same thing when I was a US citizen with a US Coast Guard documented vessel, also a resident of Costa Rica. When I tried to enter Costa Rica on the boat and get a temporary cruising permit for a 2 week stay in the country, I was told that as a resident of Costa Rica my only 2 options were:
1. import the boat and pay an import tax of 85% of THEIR estimate of the value of the boat, or
2. depart the country immediately

I left the country immediately.

Moral of story - if you are a resident of a country, you have to pay their taxes the same as if you are a citizen of the country. No exceptions, no temporary cruising permits, just pay the taxes.
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Old 01-03-2019, 12:27   #5
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Re: French Citizen, Permanent resident in Canada buying a french registered boat in U

Quote:
Originally Posted by RobinBC View Post
Do you mean what I am trying to do is illegal? The person I want to buy the boat from is doing the same but in the US with no problem...
You cannot bring that boat into Canada as a permanet resident without paying sales taxes (and duty if it was built in a non-NAFTA country).

If the seller is telling you that he has kept this boat in the US for longer than one year (under a cruising license) He is either not telling the truth or has simply not been caught ........ yet.
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Old 01-03-2019, 14:29   #6
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Re: French Citizen, Permanent resident in Canada buying a french registered boat in U

Interesting... Thanks for the answers!
So just to confirm sale taxes for bringing a boat from outside Canada to BC are PST: 7% of the value of the boat, no HST because of BC?
What exatly is the value of the boat? Not the price I paid for it?


Also not sure about the duty tax, looks like CETA 2017 might have changed things to import boat from EU to Canada?


Rest also to see how to export the boat out France...
Thanks guys!
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Old 01-03-2019, 14:45   #7
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Re: French Citizen, Permanent resident in Canada buying a french registered boat in U

Quote:
Originally Posted by RobinBC View Post
Interesting... Thanks for the answers!
So just to confirm sale taxes for bringing a boat from outside Canada to BC are PST: 7% of the value of the boat, no HST because of BC?
What exatly is the value of the boat? Not the price I paid for it?


Also not sure about the duty tax, looks like CETA 2017 might have changed things to import boat from EU to Canada?


Rest also to see how to export the boat out France...
Thanks guys!
Customs will also be looking to collect GST.
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Old 02-03-2019, 10:24   #8
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Re: French Citizen, Permanent resident in Canada buying a french registered boat in U

Quote:
Originally Posted by RobinBC View Post
Interesting... Thanks for the answers!
So just to confirm sale taxes for bringing a boat from outside Canada to BC are PST: 7% of the value of the boat, no HST because of BC?
What exatly is the value of the boat? Not the price I paid for it?


Also not sure about the duty tax, looks like CETA 2017 might have changed things to import boat from EU to Canada?


Rest also to see how to export the boat out France...
Thanks guys!
Your right about no duties from Europe, that's been dropped so only HST on your bill of sale.
Duties are now on US built boats coming into Canada due to Trump and all the sabre rattling on NAFTA or whatever the hell it's called now?
If your ever going to travel abroad then the boat should be registered in the same country as the owner's passport or lots of paperwork headaches abroad. As far as you staying in Canada with it? Talk with the source! Transport Canada for your options. Good luck with it!
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Old 02-03-2019, 11:01   #9
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Re: French Citizen, Permanent resident in Canada buying a french registered boat in U

As to the boat you are purchasing in the USA. Where was it manufactured?

The importation duties will depend on which country it was imported from - country of original manufacture.

If it is a USA manufactured boat then a 10% duty will be charged because of the Canadian governments recent imposition of a retaliatory tariff due to Trump's tariffs imposed on Canadian steel and aluminium. The 10% duty is on the landed value . Note the federal and provincial sales taxes will be charged on the appraised value inclusive of the 10% duty. So you are looking at something like 17 percent taxation due immediately upon entry into British Columbia.

The import duty will be based on landed value inclusive of transport to BC. Likely based on your purchase value, bill of sale document plus transport costs to BC.

The PST appears to be based on depreciated value, reference for method of calculation: https://www2.gov.bc.ca/assets/gov/ta...-108-boats.pdf

"Boats Acquired Outside of BC and Brought Into BC
Unless a specific exemption applies, PST is payable on a boat acquired outside of BC and
brought, sent or received in BC by:
 A BC resident
 A person who is not a BC resident if the boat is for use or consumption:
• by a BC resident, or
• by the person who is not a BC resident, or by another person, at the expense of a BC resident
You pay PST (see PST Rates below) on the total amount you pay to receive title to the boat,including the purchase price and charges for transportation, brokerage fees, customs, excise and any other costs, except the GST."

I believe the GST is 5% and that there is no longer an HST but you should check on the Canadian federal sales taxation applicability for your transaction. Worst case, the taxation would be your purchase price plus transport cost to BC, times 10% import tariff. And then the additional PST - GST, which would be 12%. So perhaps as high as 10% + (12% times 110% [the landed value plus 10% import duty]) which equals 23.2% of your landed valuation, unless there is no GST and you can utilize a lower depreciated value for your vessel than its landed value as determined for import duty.

NAFTA is still in place as the USMCA [United States, Mexico, Canada] trade agreement has yet to be agreed to by all parties. And the retaliatory tax on USA goods remains because the USA still has its IMO ridiculous tariffs on Canadian metals.

I don't know what the import duty is for European manufactured vessels imported into Canada. First issue is to determine country of original manufacture.

It is an especially bad time to import a USA manufactured boat into Canada because of Trump's declaration of national security issues with importation of Canadian metals and the resultant retaliatory tariffs imposed by Canada against USA goods, whereas the import tariff would have been nil to modest e.g. 1% under ordinary NAFTA agreement.

Your French citizenship avails you the opportunity to have the vessel flagged as a French vessel, but your Canadian residency results in imposition of Canadian taxation. You don't get to receive a temporary importation waiver of the vessel as would say, a USA resident obtaining a cruising permit for a limited period to time.

By the way, why hasn't Canada renamed that province to Canadian Columbia? Y'all Brexited a long time ago.

"Canada, Mexico and the EU announced a 10 percent and 25 percent retaliatory tariff, respectively, on several U.S. goods, including boats, in June, after the Trump administration imposed a 10 percent duty on aluminum from American’s closest allies and a 25 percent levy on steel. (China added boats to the list of products it would impose retaliatory tariffs on in August.)"
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Old 02-03-2019, 11:49   #10
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Re: French Citizen, Permanent resident in Canada buying a french registered boat in U

If you are buying a pleasure craft from another country, remember that construction standards differ from country to country. Make sure that the boat meets Transport Canada’s Construction Standards for Small Vessels or that you can modify the boat to meet these standards before you operate it.

The Canada Border Services Agency (CBSA) will ask you for specific documents as well as information on the boat and the seller to confirm the sale and assess the duties and taxes on the boat. Before buying the boat, contact the CBSA to find out what you will need from the seller to bring the boat to Canada.

You will need to obtain a pleasure craft license. https://www.tc.gc.ca/eng/marinesafet...cence-1898.htm
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Old 02-03-2019, 11:55   #11
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Re: French Citizen, Permanent resident in Canada buying a french registered boat in U

FYI:

RE: Complying with Canadian small vessel design, construction, and equipment regulations and standards.

Complying with Canadian small vessel design, construction, and equipment regulations and standards - Transport Canada

STANDARDS FOR THE CONSTRUCTION AND INSPECTION
OF SMALL PASSENGER VESSELS:

http://http://www.tc.gc.ca/publicati...R/TP11717E.pdf
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Old 02-03-2019, 11:56   #12
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Re: French Citizen, Permanent resident in Canada buying a french registered boat in U

Quote:
Originally Posted by wannacat View Post
Your right about no duties from Europe, that's been dropped so only HST on your bill of sale.
Duties are now on US built boats coming into Canada due to Trump and all the sabre rattling on NAFTA or whatever the hell it's called now?
If your ever going to travel abroad then the boat should be registered in the same country as the owner's passport or lots of paperwork headaches abroad. As far as you staying in Canada with it? Talk with the source! Transport Canada for your options. Good luck with it!

Really interesting... I didnt think about that one, the goal is to stay in Canada for several years and then travel abroad. I guess I will have to get a canadian passport. I will definitely talk to Transport Canada as well. Thanks for the help!
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Old 02-03-2019, 12:13   #13
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Re: French Citizen, Permanent resident in Canada buying a french registered boat in U

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Originally Posted by RobinBC View Post
Really interesting... I didnt think about that one, the goal is to stay in Canada for several years and then travel abroad. I guess I will have to get a canadian passport. I will definitely talk to Transport Canada as well. Thanks for the help!
Do you have dual Canadian and French citizenship? If so then you can readily obtain a Canadian passport, otherwise you just have either a visa or a permanent residency.

Not sure, but I believe that there are simplified visa procedures for Canadian citizens in crossing into the American Salish Sea and visitation to the USA, e.g., the State of Washington, in case you wish to sail south from British Columbia.

That is assuming the Donald doesn't try to build a wall along the 49th parallel, or the Canadian's don't begin building a southern wall to keep us Yanks, out. You know what they say about assuming.

Hey could y'all please discontinue exporting your cold air from Canada. It's going to be -15 degrees Fahrenheit tonight here in northwest Montana with wind chills of about -25 F. The water temperature is presently a refreshing 31.1 Fahrenheit, below freezing.
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Old 02-03-2019, 12:19   #14
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Re: French Citizen, Permanent resident in Canada buying a french registered boat in U

Quote:
Originally Posted by Montanan View Post
As to the boat you are purchasing in the USA. Where was it manufactured?

The importation duties will depend on which country it was imported from - country of original manufacture.

If it is a USA manufactured boat then a 10% duty will be charged because of the Canadian governments recent imposition of a retaliatory tariff due to Trump's tariffs imposed on Canadian steel and aluminium. The 10% duty is on the landed value . Note the federal and provincial sales taxes will be charged on the appraised value inclusive of the 10% duty. So you are looking at something like 17 percent taxation due immediately upon entry into British Columbia.

The import duty will be based on landed value inclusive of transport to BC. Likely based on your purchase value, bill of sale document plus transport costs to BC.

The PST appears to be based on depreciated value, reference for method of calculation: https://www2.gov.bc.ca/assets/gov/ta...-108-boats.pdf

"Boats Acquired Outside of BC and Brought Into BC
Unless a specific exemption applies, PST is payable on a boat acquired outside of BC and
brought, sent or received in BC by:
 A BC resident
 A person who is not a BC resident if the boat is for use or consumption:
• by a BC resident, or
• by the person who is not a BC resident, or by another person, at the expense of a BC resident
You pay PST (see PST Rates below) on the total amount you pay to receive title to the boat,including the purchase price and charges for transportation, brokerage fees, customs, excise and any other costs, except the GST."

I believe the GST is 5% and that there is no longer an HST but you should check on the Canadian federal sales taxation applicability for your transaction. Worst case, the taxation would be your purchase price plus transport cost to BC, times 10% import tariff. And then the additional PST - GST, which would be 12%. So perhaps as high as 10% + (12% times 110% [the landed value plus 10% import duty]) which equals 23.2% of your landed valuation, unless there is no GST and you can utilize a lower depreciated value for your vessel than its landed value as determined for import duty.

NAFTA is still in place as the USMCA [United States, Mexico, Canada] trade agreement has yet to be agreed to by all parties. And the retaliatory tax on USA goods remains because the USA still has its IMO ridiculous tariffs on Canadian metals.

I don't know what the import duty is for European manufactured vessels imported into Canada. First issue is to determine country of original manufacture.

It is an especially bad time to import a USA manufactured boat into Canada because of Trump's declaration of national security issues with importation of Canadian metals and the resultant retaliatory tariffs imposed by Canada against USA goods, whereas the import tariff would have been nil to modest e.g. 1% under ordinary NAFTA agreement.

Your French citizenship avails you the opportunity to have the vessel flagged as a French vessel, but your Canadian residency results in imposition of Canadian taxation. You don't get to receive a temporary importation waiver of the vessel as would say, a USA resident obtaining a cruising permit for a limited period to time.

By the way, why hasn't Canada renamed that province to Canadian Columbia? Y'all Brexited a long time ago.

"Canada, Mexico and the EU announced a 10 percent and 25 percent retaliatory tariff, respectively, on several U.S. goods, including boats, in June, after the Trump administration imposed a 10 percent duty on aluminum from American’s closest allies and a 25 percent levy on steel. (China added boats to the list of products it would impose retaliatory tariffs on in August.)"

Thanks for the answer, the boat was manufactured in France. So I believe there is no duty, only PST (7%) and not sure about the GST...
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Old 02-03-2019, 12:34   #15
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Re: French Citizen, Permanent resident in Canada buying a french registered boat in U

Okay, French boat, then no adverse retaliatory import tariff due. Good news.

BC no longer has Harmonized Sales Tax, instead they have a PST [provincial sales tax] of 7% and your federal government has a GST which is 5%. I believe that the GST will apply, but not sure. We don't have any sales taxes in Montana which is why a lot of Albertans come to shop here in the Big Sky and drive back across the border with their personal goods. Costco especially does a thriving business due to the multitude of Canadian shoppers.

You should consider flagging the vessel in Canada, it would look grand flying the new flag.

But if you are partial to the tri-color then, Viva la France.

Or heck if you have dual citizenship you could fly both flags proudly.

Enjoy your new boat and sailing the BC waters.

You will want to move your boat to BC promptly so as to avoid e.g., State of Washington foreign vessel issues, registration, fees, taxation, etc., etc. Albeit it is not the most pleasant time to sail the Salish.
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