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Old 05-22-2015, 06:47 AM   #15
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Thanks everyone for the info. There seems to be more to it than i thought.Also i prefer to stay off the radar as far as state and federal governments go.So i feel my best bet is leave the sleeping dog lay, pay the taxes & enjoy traveling.
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Old 05-22-2015, 07:47 AM   #16
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Some register in Montana as LLC to help in event of an accident to prevent lawsuits.
This does not work as any involved will sue the driver of the RV anyway.
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Old 05-22-2015, 08:06 AM   #17
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This does not work as any involved will sue the driver of the RV anyway.
I'm not a lawyer (nor do I play one on TV!) but I would think that they would try to sue the driver AND the owning LLC, looking for the deepest pockets? That could then mean you have two lawsuits to defend?
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Old 05-22-2015, 04:19 PM   #18
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I'm not a lawyer (nor do I play one on TV!) but I would think that they would try to sue the driver AND the owning LLC, looking for the deepest pockets? That could then mean you have two lawsuits to defend?
In today's world, anyone involved would probably be listed in a lawsuit, even the gas jockey that filled the tank
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Old 05-22-2015, 07:39 PM   #19
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Well, most RVers who use a Montana LLC for vehicle registration are not using the LLC as a for-profit business but rather as a holding company. The LLC itself will usually have no assets other than the vehicle or vehicles themselves. There is no intent in the operation of the company to make a profit. Therefore, no "deep pockets" attributed to the company itself. The company owns the vehicles and you essentially own the company as the primary member or members (owners of the company are known as "members").

The way it was explained to me, there is NO protection given by the LLC to the owner in this situation. Therefore, the driver is still responsible for any legal action when involved in an accident or insurance claim. It makes no significant difference whether you own the vehicle outright or if it's held in an LLC that you own ...or so says my personal lawyer. It's a different situation than if it was a for-profit company involved in bankruptcy or law suit against it because of its negligence, etc. where the liability is "limited."

Yes, I suppose the LLC could be named in a lawsuit in addition to yourself but it shouldn't make a monetary difference should a judgment be made against the LLC.

All this is just my understanding and of course, Iím not a lawyer either.
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Old 05-23-2015, 02:55 AM   #20
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Both our vehicles are registered in Montana and both have the permanent tags because they are over 10 years old.

Apart from the zero sales tax, another advantage is not having to get annual inspections of any kind which makes life easier for those on the road full time.

In our case, the primary reason was to make ownership of US vehicles easier, especially the one in South America because we could do it all via email and get the new plates shipped down to us.

One minor disadvantage of Montan is that insurance premiums might be higher than in some other states. Using a postal address in CA rather than Montana saved heaps.
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Old 05-23-2015, 06:52 AM   #21
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Yes, I suppose the LLC could be named in a lawsuit in addition to yourself but it shouldn't make a monetary difference should a judgment be made against the LLC.
As a non-lawyer I tend to agree. My point (which probably has little to no merit?) is that it's simply another lawsuit the driver of the vehicle (owner of the LLC) will have to defend. That in and of itself incurs time, stress, and possible lawyer expenses, even if there is no eventual judgment.
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Old 05-23-2015, 11:16 AM   #22
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I live in Colorado and as stated before - the state a few years back went to storage lots and looked for Montana plates. Many people got some bad news. For that reason I bit the bullet and paid the taxes and got Colorado plate. Those 2 pieces of of metal with the Colorado mountains cost me over $6,000! But I have the piece of mind like another poster said of not looking over my shoulder and paying penalties. The other reason is I tow a car and a boat at times and both those have Colorado plates. I didn't want to put up a flag by having Montana played RV and Colorado plated car/boat. It's takes just one cop to pull you over for some reason and then you get the fun letter from the state.
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Old 05-23-2015, 12:57 PM   #23
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It's not inherently bad nor illegal for the coach to have the plates of one state and the toad to have the plates of another.

What the Montana lawyers will tell you is that it could increase suspicion of the LEOs in your home state (or the state in which your toad is registered). Other states really don't care nor can they really do anything about it as in itself is not illegal to be towing a vehicle registered in another state. You are not breaking any laws if you are in a state away from your home state and the motorhome and toad have different plates.

Again, what your home state is looking for is if you are complying with the registration laws. That's why, for example, it may look suspicious to a Colorado LEO if they notice you're driving a Montana motorhome towing a car with Colorado plates. If pulled over for something else, it may prompt them to look into whether you are in fact complying with Colorado registration laws since they will see you have a Colorado driver's license with a Colorado address.

When I first formed our LLC, we were still living in a stick house and the Montana lawyers suggested we keep our car registered in our home state. The reason they gave us is that if we were using car daily and going in and out of our neighborhood, we'd want to have the plates of our home state on our car as it obviously doesn't look right to neighbors even though we may have been able to comply with our state's registration laws.

Therefore, for awhile we had the motorhome with Montana plates and the car with the home state plates. Again, I wasn't worried once we left our home state. And really wasn't too worried even in our home state as I felt I could demonstrate and justify the situation an LEO in my home state that I didn't actually own my motorhome, a company I was associated with owned it. That usually is all the explanation necessary.

Now that we don't own a stick house, both vehicles have Montana plates.
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