Laws, Regulations & Annotations
Business Taxes Law Guide – Revision 2015
Sales and Use Tax Annotations
585.0000 VEHICLES, VESSELS, AND AIRCRAFT—Regulation 1610
585.0004.500 Delivery of Boat Outside California. The seller of a pleasure boat agrees to have a broker deliver the boat to the purchaser outside the California waters with the purchaser aboard the boat during its trip out of state. There is no agreement to pass title before delivery and title in fact does not transfer to the purchaser before physical delivery of the boat out of state such as would be the case if there were, e.g., a close of escrow in which the bill of sale were delivered to the purchaser before the delivery of the boat.
Even if the broker represented the seller in negotiating the sale of the boat, if the purchaser is the party who arranges with the broker to deliver the boat, the broker would be acting as the purchaser's agent or representative in taking the boat from California to a point outside of California. Accordingly, the seller's delivery of the boat in California to the broker as the purchaser's representative would be subject to tax.
If the seller hires the broker to deliver the boat and, as the seller's agent, the broker had possession and control of the boat in taking the vessel outside of California, and only gave possession or control of the boat to the purchaser outside of California, the vessel would be regarded as delivered to the purchaser outside California. This is true even if the purchaser was on board the boat on the trip from California to the out-of-state point, as long as the purchaser does nothing that could be construed as controlling the boat, e.g., steering the vessel or acting in any way other than as a mere passenger with no possession or control. 11/19/99. (2000-3).