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Old 01-12-2018, 03:44 PM   #1
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Default RI registered boat kept in Pawcatuck. Tax concerns?

I'm getting back into boating after a 5 year layoff and I recently purchased a 20'CC that I plan on keeping in the Westerly/Pawcatuck area. I would like to keep the boat on the RI side of the Pawcatuck river as my boat is registered in RI but I'm open to the Pawcatuck side as well. My one concern is that if I keep the boat on the CT side of river that I might run into problems with the boat being registered in RI and potential tax issues. Has anyone run into issues keeping an out of state boat in CT?
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Old 01-12-2018, 04:22 PM   #2
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I'm getting back into boating after a 5 year layoff and I recently purchased a 20'CC that I plan on keeping in the Westerly/Pawcatuck area. I would like to keep the boat on the RI side of the Pawcatuck river as my boat is registered in RI but I'm open to the Pawcatuck side as well. My one concern is that if I keep the boat on the CT side of river that I might run into problems with the boat being registered in RI and potential tax issues. Has anyone run into issues keeping an out of state boat in CT?
You pay "sales tax" to the state you register the boat in. If you register the boat in Rhode Island you don't pay any tax, but if you register it in Rhode Island and keep it on the Connecticut side of the river you are liable to pay Connecticut whats called a "Use Tax" which is the same rate as the sales tax.

I went through this already. I got a nasty letter from CT Department of Revenue because the Coast Guard sends them a list of documented boats whose owners live in CT. My boat was registered in Rhode Island, and I kept the boat at a marina in Westerly therefore I owed Connecticut zero "USE TAX". I proved my case by supplying all my receipts, marina contracts, etc and I got a letter stating I was in the clear. No tax due.
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Old 01-12-2018, 04:56 PM   #3
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Very good information Chris. Your scenario is almost the flip of what mine would be. Only difference is I don't see any mechanism that would trigger the state of CT to tax me unless the marina reports it to the state or they spot check the marinas.
Out of curiosity, what marina are you at in RI?
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Old 01-12-2018, 06:00 PM   #4
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I live in RI. Bought my boat in RI in December and paid no sales tax. The boat was then slipped in Mass in May of the following year. Ten years later Mass tax authorities pursued me for Mass sales tax as i had brought/slipped the boat in Mass within 6 months of purchase. Back and forth with them - final resolution was I ended up paying the tax, but had them agree to waive interest and penalties. That sucked as I paid them $2400!
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Old 01-12-2018, 06:26 PM   #5
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You will need to check this out as it is possible that the laws have changed. I think it use to be if the boat was in the state in excess of 30 consecutive days, and now may just be 30 days total. But with a 20 foot or trailerable boat it is hard to prove that the boat has not left the state. My buddy is from MA and has had a slip for is 20' in CT for the last 14 years with no issue.
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Old 01-12-2018, 09:49 PM   #6
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For what it's worth I've kept a NY registered boat in Saybrook CT for the last 3 years with no issues from the tax man. I know it's a risk, but the chances of someone from the state showing up at our dump of a marina and finding it seems slim.
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Old 01-13-2018, 06:52 AM   #7
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don't ask....don't tell
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Old 01-13-2018, 07:39 AM   #8
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The marina I worked at (MA.) for a little while the revenue guys would come through once a year and make a list, including the off-site service dept. The customers were never amused.
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Old 01-13-2018, 07:44 AM   #9
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I rather keep the boat on the RI side but if I have to I might roll the dice and keep it on the CT side for a year or two.
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Old 01-13-2018, 08:10 AM   #10
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Default Dept of Revenue Services inspecters

I know a guy who used to work for Ct Dept of Revenue services. One of his duties was to inspect every marina in CT and make a list of every boat that did not have a tax decal. Also marina operators are required to notify them of any out of state boat that remains in their marina in excess of I think 60 days.
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Old 01-13-2018, 08:54 PM   #11
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I love they way you guys have 'no issues' with willfully de-frauding a state government. Your families must be so proud ...
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Old 01-13-2018, 09:24 PM   #12
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The righteous one has spoken.
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Old 01-13-2018, 10:04 PM   #13
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I love they way you guys have 'no issues' with willfully de-frauding a state government. Your families must be so proud ...

Um...."They way" and "de-frauding" ? Your English teacher must be so proud....
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Old 01-14-2018, 06:47 AM   #14
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Doing my best to stay in RI. From my initial round of calls it seems like there is a lot less inventory on the RI side of the river.
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Old 01-14-2018, 10:00 AM   #15
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I love they way you guys have 'no issues' with willfully de-frauding a state government. Your families must be so proud ...
being from the south you cannot understand the feelings of being raped daily by our government up here in connecticut.
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Old 01-14-2018, 10:26 AM   #16
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What are you saving?? Is it a one time tax bill? For me I would slip the boat where I want, pay the one time tax. If you did it in '17 you could deduct it. Moving forward not sure if you will be able to. I guess its dependent on Mortgage etc. Anyway that's me.

I think people work too hard in trying to save a buck, in the end costing them more. IMO if you can't pay the tax don't own the boat. Its just another expense, at least its one of those one-time expenses. There are so many new and recurring expenses that make this trivial in the long run.
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Old 01-14-2018, 03:53 PM   #17
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You don't make money by handing it out. I'm pretty sure most people don't claim the sales tax on orders that they place on the internet or earnings from gambling unless done at the point of sale or winning. Somehow people are comfortable keeping this money.
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Old 01-14-2018, 03:55 PM   #18
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If you want to make money you don't buy a boat for pleasure.
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Old 01-14-2018, 04:17 PM   #19
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If you want to make money you don't buy a boat for pleasure.
Touche. You got me with that one.
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Old 01-15-2018, 12:24 PM   #20
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If you want to be the RI side you could look at Lotteryville (kind of a dump but cheap) or Lockwood (next to Gray's Marina; across from the Cooked Goose).

Believe they will both have slips
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