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Car registration - time between arrival and getting residence

hello,

First time posting on this forum, the archives have been invaluable so far in navigating the maze.

I apologise for posting the ~1000th car import post here but I have a few questions I failed to find an answer for in the archives.

I am bringing a car in from the UK via trailer using Express Group (EUR900 + insurance + VAT).  They claim they bring the car in and I just collect it 4ish days later there's no interacting with customs as its from the EU and thus part of the economic free movement.  does this sound right?

I will arrive 2 days or so before the car and I am relocating ie. becoming resident.  Of course the process of applying for residence will take a while and it appears to me that I can drive the car on UK licence for up to 30 days in that scenario - effectively and knowingly not a tourist, just waiting for the bureaucracy to become resident which I think I need to be in order to register the car in Malta.  Does this sound right - or can someone tell me what is allowed to do in this period between arriving and getting residence and registering the car locally.

Thanks in advance.

Hi, Im currently going through the same process myself. you can drive the car here legally for 30 days as long as your UK insurance covers you for European cover. You are effectively a tourist.

If you have owned the car for more than 2 years you can claim Registration Tax exemption meaning you will avoid paying registration tax when you register the car which can run into the thousands depending on the car. Transport Malta website will give you a precise figure if you punch in the car info.

If you are going to claim Tax Exemption (If you can prove you've owned the car for more than 2 years) then you will need to get your residency application in sharpish as you will need the date you logged your residency for the exemption paperwork, or Transfer Of Residency, as the form is known. This can take up to 3 months I'm told but once your exemption paperwork is in you can drive on British plates until it is accepted or refused, You can then register the car at Transport Malta and get your Maltese plates etc.

If you are planning on paying the registration tax then you can just go to Transport Malta any time within 30 days and register the car even before you have applied for residency.

Im still waiting for my exemption decision and thus still driving on British plates, they don't make it easy but as the cost of the registration tax can run into thousands its worth the pain

Tom

Nice, thanks for that, so I'll get my residency sorted out sharp and see how it goes.  My UK insurance is ok with things for up to 6 months but I'll get local insurance soon anyway as its much cheaper.

I am just going to pay the registration - it's like EU4300 for me on a 2014 reg SUV with 8k miles - but after calculating the price of a exact spec new one in Malta vs paying off mine and shipping it doing the shipping still works out about £6000 better all told.

Bit of a pain but I guess that's how it is.

No worries,
Sound like you've got it pretty bang on. You just pick the car up and you're away. The import company say you have to register within 20 days, TM say 30 but if you're paying the Registration tax this should be no problem as you don't need your e-residency card first, that's only a hurdle if you're applying for exemption.

You'll need to get an inspection done just before you go to Transport Malta to register it though. I went and q'd at TM only to find out I needed to go for inspection first. Only takes 5 minutes and you just turn up, no appointment needed. They just check the chassis number etc against your log book.

http://www.transport.gov.mt/land-transp … individual

This will give you everything you need.

Good luck and welcome to Malta - Its a unique but amazing place to live.

Tom

I can only give you the benefit of my own personal experience . I brought my car in March which I had shared with my daughter for two years with me and although I had been driving it for two yrs the log book was still in her name and I only changed it  a month before arriving. To keep the car here was 1,773 euro in Vat and by the time I had paid for the plates, admin , Jevic, car insurance tax and everything else it was going to cost over E 2,500 . It wasnt worth iit.
I had a meeting with one of the main guys at Transport Malta.

Here is what I was officially permitted to do and was legal and all above board
Drive the car for 6 mths as a 'tourist'  and to do this you must keep your GB sticker on the car. You actually get allowed 7 mths but the car must go off the island by that point.

You can not become a resident and file for an ID card in that time as once you file for residency you must register the car. Without the Id card you can still apply for your social security number, tax and banking  regardless but it becomes a faf without an employment contract.

If you are coming for employment then all you need is proof of your employment contract and go to the offices with every bit of paperwork, keep the car taxed and insured in the Uk at all times, and give them your employment contract and 35 euros, they will give you a temporary permit for your car for 1 year ( by that point you have achieved 1 yr and 7 mths with the car in the country)
At the end of the 7mths I didnt have any proof that my car had come into Malta on the ferry as we had discarded the tickets ( your meant to keep them) even though I had proof of this digitally it wasnt enough for them so they suggested I take the car off the island for a few days , go visit Sicily and re enter, keep the documents of entry and return with all paperwork and money for permit. Done within 3 hrs.

If you want to ship it over or return it then I would highly recommend you use a company based here and in England called Trotters Independent traders Malta. They offer a really good price to import / export your car for you with as little fuss as possible. For mine it was £650.

To get European insurance in Uk for 365 days of the year... Asdas 5* policys are the only ones that will cover you. For me it was less than £300 for the year on fully comp on an 09 plate including breakdown in europe.

The only issue I have come up against is the Mot as this has to be done in the uk so it will be due next year before the permit expires .....Im still trying to figure out if theres a way round that one!

It really isnt as hard as people make out it is. I have to say though  once you make that road trip with the car , your here to stay because its not something I would want to do again. Good luck with the journey!

Hi Warrman, I'm wondering if you were successful in your exemption application. We submitted the paperwork 5 weeks ago and haven't had a reply yet.

No unfortunately I wasn't due to dates of my arrival compared to owning it for 2 years, they didn't meet up by 4 days!!  I have friends that were successful though. They will look at any possibility for refusing it but if all ur ducks are aligned and the dates add up u should be OK.

The laws for registration have changed since then.. I was able to register with my passport now you must have ur I'd card before u register, also must be done within 30 days

Good luck, I'd be interested to find out if u got accepted

Tom

Hi,

Thanks for the comprehensive explanations !

I would appreciate if someone can advise if it’s worthwhile for me to import any vehicle based on the below circumstances.

We are currently residing in South Africa and looking at relocating to Malta at the beginning of September.

We own two vehicles, 2007 HONDA FR-V 117000km and a 2009 BMW 520d 93000km on the clock. Both cars owned since new, in excellent running condition, accidents free and done every scheduled maintenance. If the cars are sold in SA I’ll probably get around EUR 14000(EUR 5000 + EUR 9000 respectively). To ship one of them across to Malta will cost me around EUR4000. Since finding actual car prices online on cars in Malta is problematic, it’s quite difficult to decide whether to ship or not. And if I do decide to ship – Which one - The BMW is nice, but too big in my opinion for the streets of Malta and more expensive to maintain ?

All that assuming the Registration Tax Exemption is granted, otherwise I don’t see the point in doing it at all. According to the Tax calculator, if no exemption is granted I have to pay EUR 3700 for the HONDA and EUR 7000 for the BMW.

Alternatively, What will EUR 14000 get me in Malta ?

Thank you

To get an idea of used car prices in Malta I suggest you browse through some adverts on maltapark.com

Warrman - Still waiting for an answer. Did you pay the registration tax or export the vehicle ? What does the rejection letter say ? Do you have a time limit to pay/export ?

roadtripper :

I can only give you the benefit of my own personal experience . I brought my car in March which I had shared with my daughter for two years with me and although I had been driving it for two yrs the log book was still in her name and I only changed it  a month before arriving. To keep the car here was 1,773 euro in Vat and by the time I had paid for the plates, admin , Jevic, car insurance tax and everything else it was going to cost over E 2,500 . It wasnt worth iit.
I had a meeting with one of the main guys at Transport Malta.

Here is what I was officially permitted to do and was legal and all above board
Drive the car for 6 mths as a 'tourist'  and to do this you must keep your GB sticker on the car. You actually get allowed 7 mths but the car must go off the island by that point.

You can not become a resident and file for an ID card in that time as once you file for residency you must register the car. Without the Id card you can still apply for your social security number, tax and banking  regardless but it becomes a faf without an employment contract.

If you are coming for employment then all you need is proof of your employment contract and go to the offices with every bit of paperwork, keep the car taxed and insured in the Uk at all times, and give them your employment contract and 35 euros, they will give you a temporary permit for your car for 1 year ( by that point you have achieved 1 yr and 7 mths with the car in the country)
At the end of the 7mths I didnt have any proof that my car had come into Malta on the ferry as we had discarded the tickets ( your meant to keep them) even though I had proof of this digitally it wasnt enough for them so they suggested I take the car off the island for a few days , go visit Sicily and re enter, keep the documents of entry and return with all paperwork and money for permit. Done within 3 hrs.

If you want to ship it over or return it then I would highly recommend you use a company based here and in England called Trotters Independent traders Malta. They offer a really good price to import / export your car for you with as little fuss as possible. For mine it was £650.

To get European insurance in Uk for 365 days of the year... Asdas 5* policys are the only ones that will cover you. For me it was less than £300 for the year on fully comp on an 09 plate including breakdown in europe.

The only issue I have come up against is the Mot as this has to be done in the uk so it will be due next year before the permit expires .....Im still trying to figure out if theres a way round that one!

It really isnt as hard as people make out it is. I have to say though  once you make that road trip with the car , your here to stay because its not something I would want to do again. Good luck with the journey!

@roadtripper:

Assuming that you were in a position to present an original valid roadworthiness certificate (VRT) - that is - MOT, to Transport Malta, on what grounds did you have to pay JEVIC?

Hi. I kept the car here and paid the registration fee, looking at the resale value of the car here it was worth the money. Resale value meant the car is now worth enough to justify it. Also if you get tax exemption you ate not allowed to sell it or you ate liable for the registration tax anyway.

As for time scales for export I'm not sure. The rejection letter just have the reason for rejection and how to appeal nothing regarding export times etc

Regards

Tom

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