Costa Rica: San JoséFlamingo Tamarindo Nosara


Registration of Imported Ships

February, 2023

As people find Costa Rica the place to live, enjoy or retire, many want to take advantage of the beautiful nature, scenes, oceans, and fishing.
You can opt to lease a boat or apply for chartering license, as we explained in our article published in the October edition of Howler, named "Chartering in Costa Rica for international vessels is allowed"

However, if you want to bring down and register your ship, we will provide a brief of the process to be followed:
According to section 60 of Reglamento Organización Registro Público de la Propiedad Mueble (RORPPM), a ship is "any floating device capable of transporting people and things, intended for navigation by water, whatever its class or size."

Before the Registro Público de la Propiedad Mueble, the ships, vessels, jet skis, etc., must be registered, as well as any encumbrances or lien that affect them.



Registration of Imported Ships for the First Time.

General Requirements:
Application for registration: Through a public deed signed by the owner detailing the specifications and the characteristics of the boat, length, beam, strut, hull material, hull number if it had it, net weight, gross weight, brand, year of construction, series if indicated, name of the ship (which must be different from any other registered) and the activity it will be dedicated. Also, the engine's characteristics must be described: type, model, serial number, power, and fuel. Indicate the estimated contract value, including the engine's value. (Section 39 paragraph 2. a RORPPM)

Taxes to be paid:
a) Property tax payment for recreational class boats, sport fishing, and jet skis. The tax is paid based on the value of motor vehicles, ships, and aircraft in the local market, according to their characteristics, and by the minimum percentages and amount published by the Government. (Section 9 Law 7088 Regulation Property Tax Vehicles, Boats and Aircraft).



b) Verification of the payment of the fee established in section 33 of Law 8000, "Creation of the National Coast Guard Service,": Applies to all boats and ships, except for "artisanal fishing," when its length is less than 10.67 meters. The fee is established based on the size of the vessel and ranges from 10% (₡ 46,200) to 15% (₡69,300) of the basic salary of an office worker, currently at ₡462,200.00; this amount adjusts yearly.

c) Stamps for registration. Proof of the Tax Department indicating the fiscal value ("value stamp"): For recreational class boats, sport fishing, and jet skis. As for the other types of ships, that proof is optional; the calculation of stamps is based on the tax estimate made by the interested party.



In the following e-mail you will receive information about the special requirements and other documents for registering your ships. However, if you have any questions, please do not hesitate to contact us or visit our blog.

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