Temporary Importation for Seasonal/Leisure Use
Visitors to Canada may import goods and conveyances, including private vessels, for their personal use while in Canada. Vessel owners may leave their vessel in Canada, including in a berth at a Canadian marina, for the duration of the boating season if they plan on making a series of visits to Canada to use the vessel for leisure.
At the time of importation, the importer must specify the date on which they intend to export the vessel from Canada. When arriving by water, the vessel operator will report through the Telephone Reporting Centre (TRC) and will be provided with a TRC report number. The declared export date will be logged in the CBSA's systems.
When arriving through a land port of entry, the importer will be provided with Form BSF375, CBSA Report (formerly known as Form E99) indicating the declared exportation date.
Vessels imported for seasonal/leisure use must be exported at the end of the declared exportation date that was identified to the CBSA at the time of importation, or within 12 months from the date of importation, whichever is earlier. For example, if a non-resident imports a vessel on May 24, 2014 for leisure use, with a declared exportation date of September 30, 2014, the vessel must be exported by that date.
Any request for an extension must be directed to a CBSA office.
Temporarily Importing or Leaving a Vessel for Storage or Repair
Non-residents may import their vessels specifically for the purpose of storage or repair. They may also be permitted to leave their vessel in Canada for storage or repair at the end of the boating season.
Vessels imported or left for storage or non-emergency repairs will be documented on Form E29B, Temporary Admission Permit. A refundable security deposit may be required.
A vessel imported or left for storage or repair cannot be used for leisure or any commercial purpose while it is being stored or repaired in Canada. Once a vessel is removed from the storage or repair facility, it must be exported. It cannot be returned back to leisure use by the service provider or remain in Canada at the end of the CBSA authorization period.
Time limits for storage or repair
- The maximum time a vessel may remain in storage duty and tax free is 12 months from the date it is documented on Form E29B.
- Partial goods and services tax (GST) is payable if the vessel remains in storage longer than 12 months and up to 24 months.
- If the vessel remains in storage for over 24 months, full GST is payable.
- If the vessel cannot be exported after it has been in Canada for 18 months, regardless of how long it has been in storage, any request for an extension must be made in writing to the nearest CBSA office. The request must explain why the vessel cannot be exported by the expiry date and must provide a new, expected exportation date.
- If the vessel remains in storage for more than four (4) years, full customs duties are also payable.
- Additional information about the payment of GST is provided in Appendix A.
- A vessel may be imported or left in Canada duty and tax free for repairs for up to 18 months from the date of initial importation.
- If, after 18 months, the repairs are not finished and the vessel cannot be exported, any request for an extension must be made in writing to the nearest CBSA office. The request must explain why the vessel cannot be exported by the expiry date and must provide a new, expected exportation date.
- Extensions over the first 18 months are normally granted in 6 month increments, up to a maximum of 48 months from the date the vessel was initially imported into Canada.
- If the vessel is not exported after 48 months, full customs duties are payable.
- More information about time limitations for vessel repairs may be found in Appendix B.
Documents required from the vessel owner
In order to obtain authorization to import or leave the vessel in Canada for repair or storage, the owner of the vessel must provide the following documentation to the CBSA:
- A copy of the work order identifying the vessel with details of the repairs to be carried out and/or the agreement for the vessel storage;
- The vessel owner's name and contact information;
- The work order and/or storage agreement must show the expected completion or removal from storage date; and
- The documents must also indicate where the vessel will be stored/repaired.
The CBSA will document the vessel repair and/or storage on Form E29B and may request a security deposit from the vessel owner. Security deposits are refunded once proof of vessel exportation is provided to the CBSA.
Authorization to Act as Agent
As the service provider, you may be asked to act as an agent on behalf of a non-resident vessel owner. In such cases, in addition to a work order or a storage agreement, the documents presented to the CBSA must include the following information:
- A written and signed authorization from the vessel owner allowing you to act as the agent for any dealings with the CBSA.
- The authorization must contain:
- The owner's full name, home address, and contact telephone numbers;
- Description of the service to be performed by your facility for which the authorization is given;
- Your business name, address, telephone number, and name of a contact person;
- The timeframe for which the authorization is given; and
- The vessel owner's signature.
As an agent, you must be aware that if a security deposit is required, you will be expected to post it.
Export Procedures and Acquitting Form E29B
If the importer is exporting a vessel by trailer through a land border crossing, they must stop at a CBSA office to present Form E29B to a border services officer for acquittal.
If the vessel is exported by water, the importer will need to visit the closest CBSA office prior to leaving Canada to report the intended export date and present the E29B for acquittal.
The CBSA conducts random checks at marinas and other service locations to ensure compliance with the temporary importation provisions.
Foreign vessels on which duty and taxes have not been paid that remain in Canada without CBSA authorization may be subject to enforcement action as provided for in the Customs Act.
Foreign vessel owners who intend to maintain their vessel primarily in Canada, by repeatedly importing it for leisure use during the boating season and then putting it into a Canadian storage facility, may choose to import the vessel on a permanent basis to enjoy unrestricted use of their vessel.
For additional information regarding the temporary importation of a vessel for leisure use by visitors to Canada see the Memorandum D2-1-1, Temporary Importation of Conveyances and Baggage by Non-residents.
For additional information regarding the temporary importation of a vessel by visitors to Canada for repair or storage see Memorandum D8-1-1, Temporary Importation (Tariff Item No. 9993.00.00) Regulations.
Appendix A - Example: Temporarily Leaving a Vessel in Canada for Storage
On May 24, 2014 a non-resident imports their vessel into Canada for leisure use with a declared exportation date of September 30, 2014. If a decision is made to store the vessel over the winter, the vessel owner or their agent must contact the CBSA before September 30, to advise of the change. All of the paperwork previously described must be provided to the CBSA and the storage will be documented on Form E29B.
Extension Requests for Vessels in Storage
If an extension past the storage exportation date indicated on Form E29B is required, the vessel owner or their agent must contact the CBSA and provide a new export date. If the new export date is more than 18 months from the original importation date, the request must be made in writing and must demonstrate why it is not possible to export the vessel.
May 24, 2014
Vessel imported for leisure use with a declared export date of September 30, 2014.
September 15, 2014
Vessel owner or agent advises the CBSA that the vessel will be put into storage. The vessel will be documented on Form E29B (with or without a security deposit)
Declared export date is May 24, 2015.
May 20, 2015
Vessel owner or agent advises that hurricane warning for the upcoming week prevents the vessel from being exported by the date indicated on Form E29B.
The CBSA revises the date on Form E29B to June 1.
June 1, 2015
Vessel must be taken out of storage and exported from Canada.
If the new exportation date is more than 12 months from the date the vessel was first documented for storage on Form E29B, the vessel will be documented on Form B3, Customs Coding Form and the non-resident will be required to pay at least partial goods and services tax (GST). For example, if the extension request is for an additional 12 – 24 months from the initial date of storage, the importer will be required to pay partial (1/120th) GST each month.
May 24, 2014
Vessel imported for leisure use with a declared export date of September 30, 2014.
September 28, 2014
Vessel owner or agent advises the CBSA that the vessel will be put into storage. Vessel is documented on Form E29B (with or without a security deposit).
Declared departure date from storage is May 24, 2015 and vessel must be exported.
May 20, 2015
Vessel owner or agent advises in writing that the vessel will remain in storage until May 24, 2016 and why it is not possible to export it earlier.
As this new date is now more than 12 months from September 28, 2014, the vessel must be documented on Form B3 and payment of partial GST is required for 8 months (September 28, 2015 through May 24, 2016). Form B3 will be used to close Form E29B and will also show the new expiry date of May 24, 2016.
May 24, 2016
Vessel must be taken out of storage and exported from Canada. Vessel owner is advised to keep a copy of Form B3 and proof that the vessel was exported.
Sample GST Calculation
GST at 5%
1/120th of the GST
This amount is payable each month that the vessel remains in storage after 12 months and up to 24 months. ($2,500 for a 12-month period – 12 x $208.33)
If the extension is for more than 24 months from the initial date of storage, the balance of the 5% GST on the value of the vessel is payable.
$25,000 (minus the $2,500 previously paid) = additional $22,500 payable after 24 months of storage.
Appendix B - Example: Temporarily Leaving a Vessel in Canada for Repair
Example 1: Importation strictly for repairs:
On September 1, 2014 a non-resident brings his vessel into Canada for repairs and the declared exportation date is October 15, 2014. The repairs are noted on CBSA Form E29B. On October 10, 2014 the vessel owner or their agent advises the CBSA that the repairs cannot be completed by that time and requests an extension. The CBSA documentation will be adjusted accordingly with the revised date. Once the repairs are completed, the vessel must be exported by the revised date.
September 1, 2014
Vessel imported for repairs
Documented on CBSA Form E29B
Export date: October 15, 2014
October 10, 2014
Vessel owner or agent, advises the CBSA of a new repair date of April 15, 2015. CBSA revises the date accordingly.
April 15, 2015
Vessel must be exported from Canada.
Example 2: Extending the date after seasonal use:
On May 24, 2014, a non-resident brings his vessel into Canada for leisure use with the declared exportation date of September 30, 2014. Either the vessel owner or the agent must contact the CBSA before September 30 to advise of the new intention to leave the vessel in Canada over the winter for repairs as different relief provisions now apply. All of the necessary paperwork previously detailed must be provided to the CBSA and the vessel will be documented on Form E29B.
Example 3: Emergency repairs while in Canada for seasonal use:
If the vessel was originally imported into Canada for leisure or seasonal use and subsequently required emergency repairs, and it is not possible to export the vessel by the expiry date indicated to the TRC officer, or shown on Form BSF375 (whatever the case may be), either the non-resident or their agent must contact the CBSA before the expiry date with details as to why an extension is requested. The maximum retention period in Canada for these vessels is 18 months from the importation date.
On May 24, 2014, a non-resident brings his vessel into Canada for leisure use with the declared exportation date of September 30, 2014. If an accident occurs while the vessel is in Canada for leisure/seasonal use, the emergency repairs can be conducted without notifying the CBSA, as long as the vessel is exported by September 30, 2014. If the repairs cannot be completed by that time, an extension from the CBSA is required, and the vessel will be documented on Form BSF375 or Form E29B, Temporary Admission Permit, as determined by an officer, and must be exported at the end of the extension date. The extension date will be determined based on the estimated time it will take to complete the repairs. If the extension exceeds 18 months, another extension under a different set of relief provision may be applied if sufficient justification is presented to the CBSA.
If the vessel was imported into or kept in Canada for non-emergency repairs, and the repairs cannot be completed by the expiry date, or emergency repairs couldn't be completed within the original 18 months from the importation date, the vessel owner or their agent must contact the CBSA before the expiry date and request an extension. If the repairs will be completed within 18 months of the date the vessel was initially imported into Canada, the new expiry date will be indicated on Form E29B. If the new date is more than 18 months from the initial importation date, the importer will be required to provide written documentation to support that it is not possible to export the vessel by the expiry date. Extensions may be granted, generally in 6 month intervals, up to the sooner of 48 months from the date the vessel first entered Canada or the work is expected to be completed.
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