||04-15-2011 03:35 AM
OK, I'm totally lost here but let me ramble a bit.
What state are you in? I know people who claim their boat as their home--they "homestead" in California. They do it to preserve some rights regarding the boat not being taken away (I suppose creditors..) and being evicted from marinas (though I don't really know how that one works either.)
However, taxes are taxes are taxes. Many cruisers have their boats documented by the USCG and thus they don't have the boat registered in a state anyway. When they return, they pay taxes, yes.
Since boats don't increase in value the way that real estate does...I don't get it...
OH! Silly me, I finally DO get it--you're trying to keep your homestead exemption on your property--the property that must have been rented out and thus really isn't eligible for homesteading anyway until you return, right?
Same status/benefits as active duty military? No, a cruiser or ex-pat is not out there risking his/her life for our country. Today's active duty military have very few benefits. If a particular state is giving them a tax break, great! Military (and federal employees) who are stationed abroad pay taxes on their pay unless they're in a war zone. Ex-pats (that would be cruisers who are working abroad or anyone else who is making money abroad) get to exclude the first $75K or so of income from taxation here in the states while they're abroad. Now, there's a sad case where our military pay MORE than other Americans who live abroad.
I'm glad you have a home to return to and hope you'll enjoy cruising again soon.