Re: US State taxes

Mark Erdos



We too found Florida to be different from most other states. The boating industry is so important to the economy there, the state is protecting that business.


We purchased Cream Puff in Ft. Lauderdale and considered moving the vessel north for the 180 days and bouncing from state to state and returning to FL with a RI or DE registration. The plan was to then register in FL and avoid the tax. However, this is a very very very grey area. And,  once again when we started to be on the boat full time, if we were caught in MD after 90 days with the FL registration, we would then get stung with MD tax because we couldn’t prove sales tax was paid.


We decided to flag the vessel BVI (I have a USA and British passport) and avoided any USA sales tax requirements (USA cruising permits). This has also paid off dividends with boat insurance.




With best regards,





Sailing Vessel - Cream Puff - SM2K - #275

Currently cruising - Santa Marta, Colombia


From: [] On Behalf Of Craig Briggs via Groups.Io
Sent: Monday, March 4, 2019 10:24 AM
Subject: Re: [AmelYachtOwners] US State taxes


We brought our US flagged boat back to the US, registered it in Florida and paid no sales/use tax, even though it had been registered in NH, which has 0% tax.

When we bought it in FL in 2000 I spoke several times with the director of the Florida sales tax division that handles boats so as to "get it right". He informed me that if we left Florida in 10 days, (or checked into a state registered repair facility and left FL afterwards) and registered it in another state and sent him (the tax department) proof of the boat being out of Florida and of the other state's registration there would be no tax due.

He further explained that if we subsequently brought the boat back into FL after, if I recall correctly, 6 months, we could (should) register it in FL but the fact of having "met the sales tax requirement of another state" (even thought that was 0%) would mean no FL sales tax would be due.

So after 15 years we came back to FL and were not required to pay sales tax, just the normal annual registration fee ($200 or so).
The sales tax director said it was just like the thousands of people who move to Florida and bring their cars - if they come from a no- or low-tax state they do not have to pay the difference in the sales/use tax rate.

Craig Briggs SN68

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