Foreign citizens wishing to live in the Dominican Republic can benefit from two customs laws concerning the importation of vehicles and household effects.
Law 14/93 grants all Dominican citizens or foreigners with Dominican residency, who have lived outside the country for more than one year, the right to import tax-free all their used personal effects and household effects. However, tax is applicable on new, unused electrical appliances or used appliances starting with the second one, should there be two or more of the same kind of appliance.
- Packing List
- Bill of Lading
- Consular Invoice: In the absence of the Consular Invoice, there will be a fine of RD$6,500.00 (approx. US$200.00 according to the rate of exchange on the day)
- Photocopy of all passport pages
- Marriage Certificate (if applicable)
- Other forms and receipts provided by the General Customs Authority regarding household effects.
Dominican citizens or foreigners with legal residency who have lived outside the country for longer than six consecutive months during the last two years, have the option of importing their used vehicles, used outside the country, according to Law 168, that grants them partial exemption (51%) from paying taxes, so they are only liable for payment of 49% of the total tax amount.
The Dominican customs authorities prohibit the import of vehicles whose manufacture date does not correspond to the years 1996-2001, with the risk of confiscation of those manufactured prior to 1996 or after 2001.
- Consular Invoice
- Bill of Lading in the vehicle owner's name
- Property deed and vehicle registration (the purchase date must be longer than one year)
- Photocopy of all passport pages
- Driver's license, the original and a photocopy, from the country of residence
- Record of the property deed stamped by the consul in the country of origin
- Other form and receipts regarding household effects provided by the General Customs Authority.
Dogs and cats: must have an original vaccination certificate, less than 10 days old, together with a health certificate. The following vaccinations are required: rabies and a clean bill of health certificate. Dogs must also have the following: triple vaccination certificate, vaccination against the parvo virus (30 day validity). No special permits are needed.
Other animals: if your pet is not one of the two aforementioned species, you will have to check with the Department of Sanitation if there is some restriction about importing your pet. Birds usually require special permits and a quarantine period.
For more information, contact the office of the Inspector of Sanitation at the Ministry of Agriculture: Tel. 809-549-1309, or the General Livestock Authority on Tel: 809-547-3888 or the National Veterinary Service on 809-542-0132.
Medicines can be imported free of taxes, when and if they have their accompanying medical prescription, with the required declaration to the authorities. Alcoholic beverages and cigars can be imported in limited quantities, only for personal consumption, as follows:
- Tobacco: 200 cigarettes, 100 mini cigars or 50 cigars.
- Alcoholic beverages: 1 liter of alcohol.
- Motor vehicles (motor bikes, boats, etc.) are subject to tax at the discretion of the customs authorities. Similarly, machinery, tools, spare parts.
It is strictly prohibited to import firearms, ammunition and toxic products to the Dominican Republic. This also applies to pornographic books and materials and narcotics. The import of plants and vegetables is not allowed except by special concession of the Department of Agriculture.
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