Frequently Asked Questions
What is the current sales tax rate on boat purchases?
The current sales tax is 4.45%. This rate will be in effect until June 30, 2025.
*definitions can be found under the FAQ How do I know if I owe sales tax on the boat I just purchased?.
Is there a form required by the Department of Revenue to register a boat?
Yes, Form R-1331, Boat Registration Tax Payment Certification, is required. Form R-1331 is available on the Louisiana Department of Revenue (“LDR”) website at www.revenue.louisiana.gov/Forms.
Is there an application or processing fee to file Form R-1331?
No, there is not an application or processing fee to file the form.
What is the due date for the Form R-1331 to be submitted to both the state and the parish?
When a sales tax payment is due on the purchase of a boat, the form is due no later than the 20th* of the following month in which the boat was purchased. A sales tax liability becomes delinquent on the day after the due date. Late fees and penalties will be assessed if the form is received after the due date of the purchase.
- For a purchase date of February 1, the R-1331 and any applicable payment would be due no later than March 20.
- For a purchase date of February 28, the R-1331 and any applicable payment would be due no later than March 20.
*When the 20th falls on a non-business day (weekend or holiday), the due date becomes the next business day.
Why was I assessed late fees, penalties, and interest?
Late fees, penalties, and interest will be assessed if Form R-1331 and the sales tax payment are received after the due date of the purchase.
A tax liability becomes delinquent on the day after the due date. Sales taxes are due and payable to LDR on or before the 20th day of the month following the month in which the tax became effective per LA R.S. 47:306(A). If the return is filed late, a delinquent penalty of 5 percent of the tax due for each 30 days or fraction thereof of delinquency, not to exceed 25 percent of the net tax due.
NOTE – In addition to the delinquent penalties reported above, a taxpayer may also incur a negligence penalty if circumstances indicate willful negligence or intentional disregard of rules and regulations. Also, an examination fee may be imposed in the event LDR is required to issue a billing notice necessitated by the filing or lack of filing of this form.
Interest on the tax liability is assessed from the due date through the payment received date. Refer to Form R-1111, Interest Rate Schedule Collected on Unpaid Taxes, for applicable monthly interest rates that apply. Form R-1111 is available on the LDR’s website at www.revenue.louisiana.gov/Forms.
Why do I need to submit Form R-1331 to both the state and the parish before I can get my boat registered with the Department of Wildlife and Fisheries?
Form R-1331 must be completed and signed by both the state and the parish to certify that any applicable Louisiana state and local sales tax obligations have been met before submitting an application for a boating license to the Department of Wildlife and Fisheries in accordance with LA R.S. 47:303(D).
Do I need Form R-1331 signed by the state before it is signed by the local parish?
Do I have to complete Form R-1331 for the purchase of a jet ski?
Yes, because the jet ski must be registered with the Department of Wildlife and Fisheries.
Do I include the boat trailer on the Form R-1331?
No, the boat trailer must be registered with the Louisiana Department of Motor Vehicles and should be listed as a separate item on the notarized bill of sale and/or invoice, if applicable.
I purchased my boat from someone in another state and Form R-1331 has a space for the seller to sign. Does the seller have to sign before it can be submitted?
No, not necessarily. The notarized bill of sale must be signed by both the purchaser and the seller. Form R-1331 does not have to be signed by the seller as long as you have the required notarized bill of sale and the title, certificate of origin, or Wildlife and Fisheries registration certificate signed by you the purchaser and the seller, if applicable.
What documentation is required to be submitted with Form R-1331?
For a purchase from an individual:
A copy of the notarized bill of sale and a copy of the prior owner’s title or certificate of origin or the Wildlife and Fisheries registration certificate properly signed over to the new owner, if applicable, must accompany Form R-1331.
For a purchase from a dealer or builder:
Any sales tax due must be paid to the dealer or builder for payment to LDR. The tax paid must be listed on the invoice or billing statement and Form R-1331 should be completed and signed by both the dealer or builder and the purchaser certifying that such payment was made.
For a new resident moving to Louisiana from another state:
The Form R-1331 must also be signed by a tax officer or other authorized representative of LDR and a representative of the parish. Proof that taxes were paid will be required (bill of sale, invoice, etc.). If any sales taxes are due, they must be paid directly to LDR and/or such payment noted on the signed certificate. Louisiana sales and use tax will be assessed on the lower of the boat’s cost or fair-market value at the time the boat was brought into the state.
Where do I send Form R-1331 and required documentation?
The completed Form R-1331 and all required documentation can be sent to LDR by:
Louisiana Department of Revenue
P.O. Box 3278
Baton Rouge, LA 70821-3278
Attn: Boat Registration
Walk-ins are welcome with no appointment necessary during normal business hours M - F 8:00 a.m. - 4:30 p.m. at the LDR's office located at 617 N. Third Street, Baton Rouge, LA 70821 or 1450 Poydras St., Ste. 800, New Orleans, LA 70122.
LDR does not administer or collect for the parish. For parish contact information, please visit www.laota.com.
I know I owe sales tax. How do I get the money to the state when I send the Form R-1331?
Known sales tax payments due to the state may be remitted with Form R-1331 when submitted by mail. When the form and required documentation are submitted by fax or email, a notification of tax due will be sent to the purchaser and the payment may be remitted electronically or by payment voucher as instructed in the notice. The approved R-1331 will not be released until the payment has been fully processed and posted to the account.
LDR does not administer or collect sales tax for the parish.
How do I know if I owe sales tax on the boat I just purchased?
Isolated or Casual Sales:
- Isolated or casual sales are taxed at 4% on purchases from April 1, 2016 through June 30, 2016. Purchases made prior to April 1, 2016 or after June 30, 2016 are exempt.
- LA R.S.47:301(10)(c)(ii)(bb) excludes casual or isolated sales from the definition of "retail sale", when the property is sold by persons who do not hold themselves out to be dealers of such items.
- Person to person sales of boats (includes out-of-state). A boat purchased from a prior owner or someone not in the business of selling boats is considered a casual or isolated sale.
- The prior owner’s title, certificate of origin, or the Wildlife and Fisheries registration certificate must be properly signed over to the new owner with a notarized bill of sale signed by both parties.
- Retail sales made on or after July 1, 2018 are taxed at 4.45%
- LA R.S. 47:303(A) provides that the tax imposed by LA R.S. 47:302 shall be collectible from all "persons" as defined in the sales tax law who are engaged as "dealers", as that term is also defined in the sales tax law. The term "dealer" is very broadly defined. Part of the "dealer" definition at R.S. 47:301(4)(h) provides that "dealer" includes any person engaging in business in the taxing jurisdiction. "Engaging in buisness in the taxing juristiction" means and includes any of the following methods of transacting business: maintaining directly, indirectly, or through a subsidiary, an office, distribution house, sales house, warehouse, or other place of business or by having an agent, salesman, or solicitor operating within the taxing jurisdiction under the authority of the seller or its subsidiary irrespective of whether such place of business, agent, salesman or solictor is located in such taxing jurisdiction permanantly or temporarily or whether such seller or subsidiary is qualified to do business in such taxing jursidiction, or any person who makes deliveries of tangible personal property into the taxing jurisdiction other than by a common or contract carrier.
- Cosignment sales and auction sales are considered sales by dealers
- Sales tax must be paid to the dealer or builder for payment to the LDR and must be a seperate line on the bill of sale and/or invoice.
The use of a broker will not necessarily disqualify a transaction from qualifying as an isolated or occasional sale as long as the seller meets the following criteria:
- the seller does not hold him/herself out to be engaged in the business of selling boat or vessels;
- the seller does not have a history of frequent, regular and repeated sales of boats or vessels;
- the seller maintains title, if the boat or vessel is titled, or possession, if the boat or vessel is not titled; and
- the seller purchased the boat or vessel for his/her own use. Further, to qualify a transaction as an isolated or occasional sale under the provisions of LA. R.S. 47:301(10)(c)(ii)(bb), a buyer must submit documentation, such as a cancelled check from the seller to buyer and a bill of sale indicating title is being transferred or the prior owner’s certificate of registration showing his or her transfer of ownership to the buyer.
Where do I find more information on Boat Registrations?
Please see KNOW THE FACTS ABOUT BOAT REGISTRATION link.
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