Import from Canada to the US ... - Page 4 - Fiberglass RV


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Old 11-06-2014, 01:06 PM   #43
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Originally Posted by Lora View Post
Thank you for the info on the NB PPR. It looks like I will be making a trip to NB this weekend or next.
Lora I hope it all goes easy and well!

Something that I discovered when importing in the opposite direction is it helps if you keep with you a copy of the original for sale ad that the trailer was advertised on. Customs want to know that the bill of sale you give them is what you actually paid for the trailer. (for tax reasons at state/provincial licensing destination some folks have been know to present a Bill of Sale for less than what was actually paid). So if you got yourself a real deal on the price of the trailer Customs may not believe the price on the Bill of Sale and will make you wait while they go on line and do their own research as to what the trailer may actually be worth & even search for the original ad if its still on line. I have had a few people who have exported a used trailer out of Canada to the US tell me they had a similar experience in that regard as i did heading North.
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Old 11-06-2014, 01:31 PM   #44
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Thank you for the info on the NB PPR. It looks like I will be making a trip to NB this weekend or next.
You might want to just try calling the Port of Entry office where you will be coming across with your trailer. They will tell you what you need. It really has more to do with US customs, not Canadian, since you are bringing it into the U.S.
The most important things to remember are that you need the HS-7 form when you come across the border (http://icsw.nhtsa.gov/cars/rules/import/hs799short.pdf, a bill of sale from the owner, and their registration for the trailer that the previous owners sign over to you.
Also, make sure you get the official Customs form when you bring it through Customs with their stamp; you need this in order to license it in your state.
Some states require a temporary permit that you can obtain from your DOT prior to going up to pick up your trailer. We need that in Washington State. It is a 3 day temporary travel permit (here, anyway) and it is taped in the rear window.
Each state has different requirements, but you need the HS-7 form for sure and the paperwork from Customs. I would call your local DOT and see what they say.
When we came across into the US with our recently purchased 25 year old trailer from Victoria, B.C., we stopped at the crossing guard window, answered his questions, and he said, "OK, you are free to go." I told him that we needed the form showing we brought it across legally. He went and asked someone, then came back and told us to pull over. We got the form, but only because we asked for it! We would not have been able to license the trailer in our state without that form.
Good luck!
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Old 11-06-2014, 02:28 PM   #45
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When we came across into the US with our recently purchased 25 year old trailer from Victoria, B.C., we stopped at the crossing guard window, answered his questions, and he said, "OK, you are free to go." I told him that we needed the form showing we brought it across legally. He went and asked someone, then came back and told us to pull over. We got the form, but only because we asked for it! We would not have been able to license the trailer in our state without that form.
Good luck!
LOL not surprised..... lots of confusion on the process even at the border itself. I had a similar experience coming north in regards to what the original boarder crossing agent thought was needed vs what was actually needed.

As you say always best to do make sure you do all your homework so you know fully what is or is not needed before purchasing.
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Old 11-06-2014, 02:45 PM   #46
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Thank you both, Carol & Linda especially the advice about printing out the sale ad. I noticed that there is a Bill of Sale template on the NB Motor Vehicle site although it says "This is not an official document and is intended as an aid for our customers." Another note states that I must also have "the completed Application for Vehicle Transfer, which is found on the reverse of the Vehicle Registration certificate."
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Old 11-06-2014, 03:10 PM   #47
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Another note states that I must also have "the completed Application for Vehicle Transfer, which is found on the reverse of the Vehicle Registration certificate."
What ever you do don't laugh at the requirement as it is a big one! You must get that from the seller and make sure they are in fact the person who's name appears on the Vehicle Registration! It actually not been that many years since that document was indeed found on the back of the original Vehicle Registration but in most provinces they now have it on a completely different form.

That document is Canada's way of making sure you are not in fact buying a stolen trailer. If the seller says they can not give you the vehicle transfer papers in their name & they don't have the actual registration in their name to match it, then RUN don't walk away

If you do not have that document completely filled out and signed you will not only have serious problems at the border you will never get it registered and plated in your name in the US or in Canada for that matter.

There was a very nice Bigfoot that had to be sold off in parts here in BC not so long ago due to purchaser not getting from the seller the required Vehicle Transfer papers. They could not get it from seller as the seller never had the trailer registered in their name. They had come to having the trailer in their possession in a rather questionable fashion and the party that the government data based showed the trailer to be legally registered to could not be located in order to get them to sign off on it.

Edit: Forgot to mention that the party that purchased the trailer was warned here and elsewhere they were going to have a real problem registering the trailer (just as the person selling it did and why they were selling it) but a few folks here egged them on and told them it was possible and to buy it - funny enough most of those encouraging him were from outside the country ;-)
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Old 02-11-2016, 12:45 PM   #48
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My Experience - Importing from Canada to the US (Montana)

I wish, and was hoping that I could have added to this thread with a "these are the requirements for Montana", cut and dry explanation...but as I think people are starting to realize, there is no one answer to this stuff.

When I called the Montana border guards, the guy I talked to said I would need a signed bill of sale, and the registration.

When the seller called, he mentioned that the tag plate with the VIN was faded. All the info specific to the trailer was there, but the labels had faded out. So while the VIN, tire size, year and all that were visible, it didn't say "year", "VIN", "tire size" etc. The person he talked to said "we have to be able to read the plate clearly".

It's also been stated that the date of manufacture matters, down to the month/day.

So...I just brought a trailer from AB to Montana. The answer I got on that particular day was that only the year mattered. So this is 2016, and the trailer was made in 1991. Didn't matter that this is January and the tag clearly states that it was made March 22, 1991.

The officer on the Canadian side said "huh, interesting. For us it has to be 25 years exactly, down to the year month and day."

Short version of the story: Once I got through the gate, it was probably 15 minutes of filling out forms, and my trailer was "imported". They never went outside to look at it.

Longer version:

I pulled in, and started filling out forms. There was confusion about the lack of DOT sticker. The guy I talked to assured the guy I was currently dealing with that it was "exempt", due to being 25 years old. So we proceeded.

They never went outside to look at the trailer or the tag. So it didn't matter that it was faded. If someone else had been working that day, would that have been a sticking point? No idea.

There is nowhere on the form that says being 25 years old makes it exempt. There were a bunch of boxes I could check. I had to choose one. None of them were "exempt due to age" or anything like that. None of them fit my situation. The guy just said something like "whatever, I'll just check a box and make a note". Again...different person working that day, would that have been a sticking point?

He stamped my forms, made copies, sent me on my way.

What I thought might be issues as I was waiting in line at the gate:

The bill of sale was not notarized/certified
The tag/ID plate labels were completely faded
The trailer was almost 2 months short of truly being 25 years old
I had no license plates on the trailer.

I feel like, depending on the day, US state in which you cross over, specific employees working that day, and whether they decide to step outside and actually look at the trailer, any of those could have sent me back into Canada, without importation papers.

So...unfortunately I can't say with any certainty what you really need to get into the US.

But I can say that I did!

And the only painful part is all the conflicting information, mis-information etc., which is being spread not by us well-meaning RV-buyers, but mostly by border patrol themselves. But we can cut them some slack knowing this is NOT high priority in their training or general knowledge. The actual process was pretty easy and painless, once I was there in the middle of it.

Best bet is to call them, stop in if possible, ask a lot of questions, get names. I made sure the guy who told me "you can actually bring it across the border today instead of waiting until the end of March if you want" was still going to be there by the time I got back with the trailer. Which ended up being very important because he assured the guy I ended up dealing with, multiple times, that it was ok, it was 25 years old.

Ugh.
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Old 02-11-2016, 01:58 PM   #49
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Originally Posted by ZachO View Post
There is nowhere on the form that says being 25 years old makes it exempt. There were a bunch of boxes I could check. I had to choose one. None of them were "exempt due to age" or anything like that. None of them fit my situation. The guy just said something like "whatever, I'll just check a box and make a note". Again...different person working that day, would that have been a sticking point?

He stamped my forms, made copies, sent me on my way.

What I thought might be issues as I was waiting in line at the gate:

The bill of sale was not notarized/certified
The tag/ID plate labels were completely faded
The trailer was almost 2 months short of truly being 25 years old
I had no license plates on the trailer.

I feel like, depending on the day, US state in which you cross over, specific employees working that day, and whether they decide to step outside and actually look at the trailer, any of those could have sent me back into Canada, without importation papers.

So...unfortunately I can't say with any certainty what you really need to get into the US.

But I can say that I did!



Ugh.
Just a note on the above what I can tell you without a doubt is:

a) When transporting a trailer &/or car that is being imported/exported in either direction having plates on it is a BIG no no... a trailer that has not been imported/exported yet should not have plates on it - it should have a temp permit only. Having plates on it suggests that it is registered - which it can not be due to it having not yet been imported/exported. I know this as I had my hand slapped for as my trailer still had the sellers Ohio plates on it which I was asked to take off, a friend who got slapped for it with a trailer going south as well - in that situation they had put their own plates on the trailer.

b) re the age of the trailer I suspect Zach you simple got luck regarding them not caring about the month and date. I got called out for it heading north and they suggested I got back& park it in the US for another 8 weeks. In my case I had obtained prior a recall letter and a compliance letter from the manufacture so was able to import it regardless - just cost me more doing than it would had I waited out the 8 weeks.

c) While I was pretty sure no one went and looked at the VIN on my trailer &/or car when I imported them (or at least the party I was dealing directly wth did not) the party who was with me, says thats while I was filling out paper work they did see someone else go outside & look at the VINs on both.

I suspect you will have no problems getting your trailer registered providing you did obtain from the seller his signed over to you the trailers registration papers.
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Old 02-11-2016, 03:15 PM   #50
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From my experience bringing a new Escape to Texas, the "importation" isn't complete until you get the registration done. I hope yours is glitch-free.
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Old 02-16-2016, 10:26 AM   #51
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I imported a surfside from bc to washington state last year 2015. If the trailer is more than 25 years old it is quite easy with no taxes. Get a temporary license plate from the dmv.
Other than it is a regular title transfer. Have them write a price that you want to pay taxes on... If there is a vin or manufacturers number on the trailer you will need to take that in as well. The whole process took me about 1.5 hours at the border around 11 am.
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Old 02-16-2016, 10:42 AM   #52
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[QUOTE=Azurko;571631

Have them write a price that you want to pay taxes on...
[/QUOTE]

A real BAD idea!!

The border staff all have the internet and believe it or not they will go on line to look at the ad for the trailer to see if what you paid is close to or is what the seller was asking for it. I know a number of people importing trailers going both directions including myself who where asked where the ad for the trailer was posted and the border staff went on line and checked to see what the asking price was on the ad. In my case they did that even though I had printed off a copy of the original ad for the trailer.

If the ad is gone they will use Google to come up with what they believe to be a reasonable price. If they believe you are not trying to cheat on the taxes owing it can and will result in you paying a much larger amount.
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Old 02-16-2016, 10:43 AM   #53
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Interesting. I probably spent 30 minutes at the border, and half that was waiting in line to get to the actual booth. They also didn't care, at the border, what I paid for it. That only matters in my home state when I go to register it, and it actually doesn't matter at all with trailers, only vehicles.

I'm having a "VIN inspection" done soon, and that is supposed to be the final step before I can register/title it. In Montana, there is a flat fee. The trailer will be permanently registered for something like $170, plus a small charge for plates and taxes and all that.

It should be under $200 and then it's done for as long as I own it and live in Montana.

But yes, Mary, no guarantees until I walk out of there with plates!
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Old 02-16-2016, 11:41 AM   #54
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They also didn't care, at the border, what I paid for it. That only matters in my home state when I go to register it, and it actually doesn't matter at all with trailers, only vehicles.
So Montana does not charge sales taxes on trailers based on the purchase price?
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Old 02-16-2016, 03:07 PM   #55
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I guess not. I'll report back after I register it in case I'm wrong, but the documents that I was reading just show a flat fee, depending on what kind of trailer it is. Actual vehicles they do tax based on the price, but apparently not trailers.

I'll let you know for sure, hopefully soon!
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Old 02-16-2016, 04:22 PM   #56
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I guess not. I'll report back after I register it in case I'm wrong, but the documents that I was reading just show a flat fee, depending on what kind of trailer it is. Actual vehicles they do tax based on the price, but apparently not trailers.

I'll let you know for sure, hopefully soon!
I just did a quick look and it looks like you are a lucky guy - no sales tax on RV's in Montana!

Having said that I am well aware there is tax payable based on purchase price of an RV in many states and as such I would not recommend folks misrepresent the actual purchase price of a trailer to the border agents. As they say, Big Brother has ways of knowing everything! ;-)
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