Deferred duty initiative would be win-win for industry August 20, 2015

Deferred importation is a federal legislative initiative the Florida Yacht Brokers Association has been working toward for the past two years.  Once passed, this law will allow for foreign flagged vessel entering U.S. waters to be offered for sale to U.S. residents without having to import and pay duty on the vessel in advance. The import duty equates to 1.5% of the appraised value of the yacht.  For this reason, many yacht owners choose not to import their yachts just to offer them for sale here, as it creates an unnecessary burden of paperwork and financial outlays.

The current law was originally enacted 108 years ago during the time of steam engines and territorial protectionism.  At that time very few, if any, recreational yachts traveled to our shores from international waters. The yacht industry has evolved substantially since then. But the laws, unfortunately, have not.

At first glance, many people assume this is an attempt to create another tax cut for wealthy yacht owners. This is not the case AT ALL.  FYBA is merely asking to shift the time when duty is collected to the closing of the sale of the vessel. FYBA estimates that doing this would bring $20 billion in additional yacht inventory into the U.S. that will be offered for sale to our residents.

While those yachts are in our ports, they generate huge revenues for our industry via provisioning/crew, refit, service work, dockage rental, and the myriad other services yachts obtain. If this legislation passes, FYBA estimates at least $200 million in additional revenues for our industry will be generated across the country.

“It will be a win-win for all of us,” said Cindy Sailor, FYBA’s executive director.

As the initiative would further the betterment of our industry, MIASF supports it and is working to ensure the language minimizes or identifies any unintended consequences.

If you’d like more information, please contact the Florida Yacht Brokers Association at 954-522-9270. You can also see a video explaining the initiative at

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Marine Industries Association of South Florida. 221 SW 3rd Avenue, Fort Lauderdale, FL 33312. Phone: 954.524.2733