BREXIT: VAT Status of Boats
Published 17:38 on 13 Dec 2020
Members who have VAT paid on their boat should consider where their boat is located at the end of the Transition Period (i.e. at 23:00 UTC on 31 December 2020) as this will, to a large degree, determine its future VAT status.
Location UK excl. NI - UK VAT Paid status kept but EU VAT Paid status lost
Location EU27 - EU VAT Paid status kept but UK VAT Paid status lost
Location Channel Islands & Isle of Man - both UK & EU VAT Paid status lost
Members should ensure they have the necessary documents to prove where the boat is located at the end of the Transition Period such as notarised confirmatory letters from marinas, ordinary (i.e. un-notarised) confirmatory letters, mooring invoices and receipts, time stamped photos and AIS track records.
The RYA provides the best and most up to date resource on this subject. For those members who have not seen it the link is https://www.rya.org.uk/knowledge-advice/current-affairs/Pages/brexit-what-happens-next.aspx
Looking beyond the end of this year, having secured the boats VAT/TVA status, it is worth pointing out that the VAT/TVA paid status of boats will expire if the boat is not re-imported into the UK/EU within 3 years of departing. This has not been a problem in the past as owners could nip across to France every so often and thus retain the boats VAT paid status. It will be more of a problem in the future, as after 1 Jan 2021 UK VAT paid boats in the Island will need to return to the UK every third year, otherwise VAT paid status will be lost. Also, a UK VAT paid boat will lose its VAT paid status, if any future transfer of ownership occurs outside of the UK.
It is recommended that Members seek further advice as to their individual circumstances. The RYA is very helpful and only a telephone call away.