Foreign Flag


#1

I was speaking to a retired Indian captain who was an ISM auditor the other day before I got off my ship, and mentioned that it is tough to get a deep sea job as an officer right now. He was blown away, and mentioned an international shortage of officers. He said you have to go to hiring agencies. Does anyone know where you go to get foreign flag jobs, and will they hire Americans?


#2

VShips hires Americans. i think their website is vmanpower.com:slight_smile:


#3

I dont know if Vships hire americans, but yes i work for vhips, but there is an acute shortage of merchant navy officers, and finding a job is should not be a problem on a merchant marine ship.


#4

What about oilfield type jobs? Drillships, OSVs, divesupport, ROV support, MPVs, etc… Looking hard for work outside the USA. Any help with companies, contacts would be appreciated, especially interested in Asia.
Thanks
JP


#5

[quote=JP;19022]What about oilfield type jobs? Drillships, OSVs, divesupport, ROV support, MPVs, etc… Looking hard for work outside the USA. Any help with companies, contacts would be appreciated, especially interested in Asia.
Thanks
JP[/quote]

sean_hogue@hotmail.com DPO jobs

cliff@transatlanticlines.com Container and Tanker


#6

Jeff,
Appreciate you including my email.
The best thing to do if you are looking for a DPO’s job is to join the group on Facebook
That way you will be alerted whenever a new job is posted.
S.


#7

There are definitely jobs out there. I’m on a Belgian flag Liquefied Natural Gas Regas Vessel as we speak.


#8

Seriously, I remember hearing from some older captains that working abroad for foreign companies was pretty legit. If you had a foreign work visa or something you didn’t pay American income tax, so most of your income was take home! Is this still true, or something similar along those lines?


#9

It’s not quite that simple; read IRS Pub 54. The amount of foreign income a worker can exclude from U.S. taxation on a 2008 return is $87,600; after that it get more complicated.
In a [U]nutshell[/U] there are 2 ways to do it…

[U]One[/U], is to live abroad in your “bonified residence” while working abroad.

[U]Second[/U], to stay out of the USA and “IN” a foreign country for 330 days of the year while earning your foreign income. Most folk only see the part about being out of the USA, but more importantly one has to “be in a foreign country” and Pub 54 spells out that international waters and/or international airspace are not being in a foreign country. As I recall, Pub 54 does give examples where one could be in a foreign country by being in that country’s EEZ on an OSV for example.

I’ve seen Mariners succeed and fail at claiming this exemption, proceed with caution.

All of the above is from memory, so read and STUDY IRS Pub 54. (it’s not a complicated read)


#10

[QUOTE=Jeffrox;19256]It’s not quite that simple; read IRS Pub 54. The amount of foreign income a worker can exclude from U.S. taxation on a 2008 return is $87,600; after that it get more complicated.
In a [U]nutshell[/U] there are 2 ways to do it…

[U]One[/U], is to live abroad in your “bonified residence” while working abroad.

[U]Second[/U], to stay out of the USA and “IN” a foreign country for 330 days of the year while earning your foreign income. Most folk only see the part about being out of the USA, but more importantly one has to “be in a foreign country” and Pub 54 spells out that international waters and/or international airspace are not being in a foreign country. As I recall, Pub 54 does give examples where one could be in a foreign country by being in that country’s EEZ on an OSV for example.

I’ve seen Mariners succeed and fail at claiming this exemption, proceed with caution.

All of the above is from memory, so read and STUDY IRS Pub 54. (it’s not a complicated read)[/QUOTE]

I know a few that had problems trying that exemption and failed. They worked on the Palmer in Antarctica…which in not a “foreign” country.


#11

I can speak from first hand experience because I got nailed by the IRS. Just being outside the U.S. won’t count. They nailed me because I crossed into international waters. Once you cross into international waters, it is game over.
I was lead to believe that ANY time on the water, outside the US is all good. NOT!!!
The only way you can get away with it, is if you are on a vessel, and you remain in those waters only, i.e. a suply boat working ONLY in a certain country.
If you’re on a containership sailing from the US to Europe, forget it. Now you make have some people say that is ok. But, as I said, I got nailed by the IRS for $40k. They wanted ship logs to prove I was in domestic waters.

The Bonified resident is a good option, but you need to actually live there, and the boat address is not sufficient. I had to provide a rental agreement for my home, light bills, etc.

But something else to remember, when you are back in the States, you can not gain any type of employment here. So you can’t make a little extra time here in the U.S…

Everything is legal…until you get caught. Then it becomes a royal pain in the ass. I hated to pay the government back that $40k. I could not fight it because they were right. I thought I could get away. After all, why would the IRS go after little old me? Boy was I wrong…


#12

From '72 to early '75, I worked in Africa, South and Central America doing salvage work. The 18 month rule was in effect then. After all of the audit horror stories I’d heard, I kept all records and and a journel. After all that, I was never questioned.

The last couple of years, I have seen several guys busted on the “sailor tax”. Mostly from stupidity.


#13

better have all your “ducks in a row”…filing as a transportation worker is a “red flag” for the IRS…it can definitely disrupt your life when ashore!!


#14

It’s probably never a good idea to take tax advice on the internet. If you do work on a foreign vessel you should definitely get advice from a lawyer or accountant.

There are 3 requirements to meet to exclude foreign income:

  1. Your tax home is in a foreign country. This is your main place of employment, ie your ship. If you’re on a foreign flag ship, it doesn’t matter where the ship goes, because the ship is always under the sovereignty of the flag state.

  2. You have to have income earned in foreign country.

  3. You reside in a foreign country for the whole year [B]or [/B]you stay out of the US for 330 days of any 12 month period. Even if you’re only on the foreign ship for 6 months, you’re still good as long as you come back to the US for less than 30 days for that 12 month period. Time spent in US ports on foreign ships would count against the 30 days.


#15

Nothing on foreign income, but I’ve been using Martin Kapp @ sailortax.com for 8 years now. Nothing but [U]good[/U] experience. Saves many thousands of $$.


#16

good info, thanks. Now can anyone shed some light on sailing under foreign flag? What is the best way to get your foot in the door w/ some foreign companies? I understand the European’s are developing this new union headed by the UK and Dutch… I wonder if they will allow U.S. citizens to get a seat in that hall.


#17

Mark Kapp?? Wasn’t he that guy who did that sailor deduction and come top find out that a sailor could not do that, and for his penalty he had to post something about that?