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Old 28-01-2019, 19:01   #1
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US citizen/resident & EU citizen buying EU boat

I think I have it all figured out, but there is something I am not clear about. I would appreciate some help on this. I plan to consult an attorney but I would like to be a little more prepared, if possible.

I searched the forum but I did not have much luck.


Here are some facts:
My wife and I are US citizens and residents. We are also EU citizens (from different EU countries).

We are buying a no-VAT paid boat in France. We would like to legally avoid paying EU VAT, since we plan to bring the boat to US eventually.

We want to cruise the Med for few years and still maintain our US residency. During the off season, we will be leaving the boat in Turkey, which is a non-EU country, and will be returning to US.

We know that a non-EU country resident can keep his boat in any EU country for up to 18 months. The boat clock can be reset by taking the boat to a non-EU country, even for a day.

We also know that for a person to be resident of an EU country, he must stay in that EU country for more than 183 days in a calendar year.

If the boat's owner/skipper is EU resident, the boat's VAT is due and payable.


My question is:
Do I still become an EU resident, (and of which country) if I stay in EU more than 183 days total, but less than 183 days in each of the EU countries?

In other words, if I stay in each EU country for, example, 60 days, for a total of 183+ days in the whole EU, do I still become an EU resident?

Thank you in advance.
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Old 28-01-2019, 19:07   #2
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I would suggest you ask one of your Consulates.. and if they say you do not..
Get it on paper just to be safe.
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Old 29-01-2019, 12:20   #3
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Re: US citizen/resident & EU citizen buying EU boat

hold on, i no longer know the exact number of days you must live in the Us to be considered a resident, but i did find this info on the US embassy website when researching how to file taxes

(i have dual nationality too and needed to figure out ho to file as i had spent time in the US)

it could well be that the equivalent info is available for your respective european countries via this route as well.

good luck!


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Old 31-01-2019, 09:20   #4
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Re: US citizen/resident & EU citizen buying EU boat

Thank you guys.

I'm definitely going to consult an expert, but I was hoping that someone has personal experience with this.
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Old 31-01-2019, 10:10   #5
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Re: US citizen/resident & EU citizen buying EU boat

If you are living on your boat I don't believe it is considered living in the country in which you are sailing.
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Old 31-01-2019, 10:18   #6
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Re: US citizen/resident & EU citizen buying EU boat

Quote:
Originally Posted by Zai View Post
If you are living on your boat I don't believe it is considered living in the country in which you are sailing.
I wish... They calculate time in a country by checking the entry & exit stamps in your passport.
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Old 31-01-2019, 10:59   #7
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Re: US citizen/resident & EU citizen buying EU boat

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I wish... They calculate time in a country by checking the entry & exit stamps in your passport.
If you are an EU citizen why do they stamp your passport?
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Old 31-01-2019, 11:43   #8
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Re: US citizen/resident & EU citizen buying EU boat

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If you are an EU citizen why do they stamp your passport?
Good question... How does Europe determine residency for citizens visiting on a boat? Bills? Flight ticket? Port/country check in documents? They must have something and it's probably different per country.

My original question is how does one determine EU country residency. I understand the 183 day rule, but what if one spends 100 days in two or three EU countries?
Does he still become an EU resident, and of which country?
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Old 31-01-2019, 13:35   #9
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Re: US citizen/resident & EU citizen buying EU boat

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Originally Posted by boom23 View Post
Good question... How does Europe determine residency for citizens visiting on a boat? Bills? Flight ticket? Port/country check in documents? They must have something and it's probably different per country.

My original question is how does one determine EU country residency. I understand the 183 day rule, but what if one spends 100 days in two or three EU countries?
Does he still become an EU resident, and of which country?
I think you are confusing the boat and yourself.

If the boat is registered in the US then it can stay for 180 days.
You being a EU citizen can stay for as long as you like.

If you want residence you have to have an address in the country you wish to reside in.

A US citizen can stay 90 days out of 180 days in the EU.
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Old 31-01-2019, 13:46   #10
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Re: US citizen/resident & EU citizen buying EU boat

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Originally Posted by Zai View Post
I think you are confusing the boat and yourself.

If the boat is registered in the US then it can stay for 180 days.
You being a EU citizen can stay for as long as you like.

If you want residence you have to have an address in the country you wish to reside in.

A US citizen can stay 90 days out of 180 days in the EU.
Not really... A US no-VAT-paid boat can stay in EU for 18 months. Please read my first post. I believe it is accurate.

Different laws apply for people. Again, it's in my first post.
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Old 31-01-2019, 13:53   #11
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Re: US citizen/resident & EU citizen buying EU boat

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Originally Posted by boom23 View Post
Not really... A US no-VAT-paid boat can stay in EU for 18 months. Please read my first post. I believe it is accurate.

Different laws apply for people. Again, it's in my first post.
Yeah that's right sorry.
boat 18 months, people 90 days of 180 days.

Also for example in Greece if you put the boat on the hard you can turn in your transit log at customs and it stops the clock until you get your transit log back again when the boat is re-launched.


I have a non-EU boat and I have been doing this for some years now.
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Old 03-02-2019, 09:57   #12
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Re: US citizen/resident & EU citizen buying EU boat

VAT is a total minefield, but my offer is:
1. Buy the boat VAT-paid in the EU. Then the boat is in free circulation in the EU countries. You can go to France from Spain, to Italy, etc. without an issue. And even if you went to a non-EU country (such as, say, Egypt) temporarily, so long as you have the VAT docs, you can bring the boat back into the EU,(in theory without a problem).
2. When you decide you're going to take the boat out of the EU, you should be able to reclaim the VAT you paid. You are exporting a VAT-paid good permanently from the EU.
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Old 03-02-2019, 10:38   #13
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Re: US citizen/resident & EU citizen buying EU boat

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Originally Posted by parkstone bay View Post
VAT is a total minefield, but my offer is:
1. Buy the boat VAT-paid in the EU. Then the boat is in free circulation in the EU countries. You can go to France from Spain, to Italy, etc. without an issue. And even if you went to a non-EU country (such as, say, Egypt) temporarily, so long as you have the VAT docs, you can bring the boat back into the EU,(in theory without a problem).
2. When you decide you're going to take the boat out of the EU, you should be able to reclaim the VAT you paid. You are exporting a VAT-paid good permanently from the EU.
That's definitely an option, as long as I can get the VAT refunded. In the past, I never received a VAT refund even though I submitted the required forms. This one is a very sizeable VAT amount...
If I were living in EU I would pay the VAT and go on with my life, but I'm not.
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Old 03-02-2019, 11:10   #14
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Re: US citizen/resident & EU citizen buying EU boat

“In other words, if I stay in each EU country for, example, 60 days, for a total of 183+ days in the whole EU, do I still become an EU resident?”

Not sure I understand... Is there a “EU resident” status? I didn’t know. Is there a “EU citizen” status? I don’t think so.
My bet would be you can travel in different EU countries for anytime (each of them less than six months) and still be an US resident. Just a thought, I am not a lawyer.
Good luck.
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Old 03-02-2019, 11:27   #15
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No.. you can only stay in the EU for 90 days out of 180 regardless of how many countries you visit..
Look on the EU as a form of the USA with its 50 states.. it does not matter how many states I visit I have to leave after 90 days.. same for you in the EU.
They are countries in name only.. the reality is they are a Federalism of states in todays world..
Hence Brexit.. No to Federalism Yes to Sovereignty and Independence..
Residency is something you have to apply for.. like your Green Card.
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