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Old 08-06-2016, 12:13 PM   #1
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Montana LLC CDL question

Since an LLC owns the Montana registered RV (let's say it is a class A over 26k), are there any laws that require the driver to have a CDL ?

So to follow up, since a "company" owns the RV, is it a business vehicle? I know on the toter homes, they post a sign stating it is a RV, for weight and probably CDL reasons.
Since I am in South Carolina, I already have the class "F" license (over 26k with a trailer), but if I do decide to go LLC for my new RV, I want to be better prepared to make that decision..
Thanks

Please move to proper forum if necessary
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Old 08-06-2016, 12:35 PM   #2
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If you plan to stay in a home in SC, parking an RV with MT plates between uses might be an issue. The MT LLC RV ownership is usually for full timers with no other home to avoid other state's high property tax or registration fees. Folks in a number of states have discovered some places are cracking down on this when you actually live elsewhere and only register in MT for tax avoidance. (Massachusetts and NY, for example)

According to this information, all RVs can be operated with a MT class 'D' license, but they only had verification by phone since it's not clear on the MT website.

I'd ask for it in writing from Montana MVD and keep a copy in the RV if you full time.
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Old 08-06-2016, 02:16 PM   #3
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In my experience, the agent i set up my LLC with in MT never asked about endorsements or if i had a CDL. The state with which you have your drivers license determines what endorsements you need(which sounds like you already have). Your LLC should just be a holding company for your assets managed by you in the state of MT.
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Old 08-06-2016, 02:21 PM   #4
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Thanks for the replies.
I understand the in's and out's of the plate and LLC ownership.

But I am mostly interested in knowing that if a "company" owns the RV (because of the LLC), does that mean that it is automatically a "company vehicle", therefore requiring a CDL ? Even though it is not being used commercially.
In reading the link above, it states that the CDL is Federally mandated, but we all see State officers enforcing that law..
Thanks
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Old 08-06-2016, 05:14 PM   #5
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No. It's still the use, not the owner. If the "company" is not in business and is not using the rig for business purposes, the driver need not have a CDL.
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Old 08-07-2016, 11:06 AM   #6
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A couple of years ago, my state had a crackdown on "LLCs." Seems too many people with big RVs were driving locally with Montana tags. Those determined to have stretched the law a bit paid heavy fines and all the back taxes they would have paid if registered in state.
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Old 08-13-2016, 11:15 PM   #7
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The owner of the RV is as stated on the title. If in the LLC's name then yes, it is a company vehicle. If the company is not using it for its own business then it must be renting it to you. You have to file a Montana income tax return in some form every year, in which you should report depreciation and related expenses, offset by rental income. I did mine as a Montana Trust rather than an LLC, to keep it completely off my personal tax return, as the trust files its own tax return.
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Old 08-14-2016, 12:12 AM   #8
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The confusion on the LLC's continues. An LLC is NOT a business. LLC's are used as an asset protection device by providing the legal liability limits similar to a corporation but without the corporate restrictions. There should be no difference in your driver's license because the rig is owned by an LLC.

It seems that quite often someone sees the term "Company" and immediately assume that the LLC is a business. We have had clients set up the personal residences, private vehicles, and vacation homes in LLC's to protect against the possibilities of law suits.

From a federal tax angle, the LLC is called a disregarded entity or a tax nothing. If I set up my rental property in an LLC it does not change the way I report the rental on my federal tax return.

The legality of the LLC from a sales tax perspective is another entirely different matter. You have to know the laws of your state and the compliance requirements of those laws to answer any questions about the legality issues.
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Old 08-14-2016, 09:50 AM   #9
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So there you have 2 opinions: One who thinks a company is a business and one who thinks a company is not a business. No matter what you call it, you have to report the activity on your personal tax return if you don't file a separate tax return for the LLC, and that includes a Montana tax return in addition to the IRS's. And there are always expenses in owning an RV. Just decide how legit you want to be.
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Old 08-14-2016, 11:30 AM   #10
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Originally Posted by RV Vagabond View Post
So there you have 2 opinions: One who thinks a company is a business and one who thinks a company is not a business. No matter what you call it, you have to report the activity on your personal tax return if you don't file a separate tax return for the LLC, and that includes a Montana tax return in addition to the IRS's. And there are always expenses in owning an RV. Just decide how legit you want to be.
With all due respect sir, your information is totally and completely incorrect.

In case you are questioning my credentials, I have been teaching the use of LLC's for over 22 years to other CPA's. We have also been using LLC's for over 25 years as disregarded entities, which, by the way, is the IRS term for LLC's. You do NOT have a business when you set up an LLC. If I put my personal residence into an LLC I have no federal filing to provide as there is NO business being performed. The LLC is strictly for asset protection.

If you want to try to get away with using an RV as a business by placing it into either an LLC or a trust, then certainly be my guest, but if you would like to see the various federal tax court cases regarding that issue I will be glad to provide the various citations.

An LLC can have a lot of uses including legitimate business uses, but it also can and is being used as an asset protection entity to help reduce the risk of lawsuits which can easily be done with absolutely NO federal filings.
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Old 08-14-2016, 11:35 AM   #11
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Well, one of those opinions comes from a person who has professional knowledge of LLC's, so it might carry a bit more weight than typical internet blather.

But sometimes the "opinion" that matters comes from a clerk at a local DMV office and it isn't always a correct one, despite their employment. Don't be afraid to ask for a "fact check" with a supervisor or other higher authority.
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Old 08-14-2016, 11:50 AM   #12
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Well, one of those opinions comes from a person who has professional knowledge of LLC's, so it might carry a bit more weight than typical internet blather.

But sometimes the "opinion" that matters comes from a clerk at a local DMV office and it isn't always a correct one, despite their employment. Don't be afraid to ask for a "fact check" with a supervisor or other higher authority.

Gary, that's typical of the problems with LLC's. Most layman don't understand the uses of it. Many in law enforcement do not understand the uses of it. Add to the confusion of the LLC in normal circumstances, you have people trying to use the LLC's for legitimate and illegitimate purposes. This brings tax law, legal liability laws, residency laws, and licensing laws all into play. I'd be willing to bet that most DMV folks wouldn't have a clue as to how to answer the posters original question.
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Old 08-14-2016, 11:59 AM   #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by RV Vagabond View Post
So there you have 2 opinions: One who thinks a company is a business and one who thinks a company is not a business. No matter what you call it, you have to report the activity on your personal tax return if you don't file a separate tax return for the LLC, and that includes a Montana tax return in addition to the IRS's. And there are always expenses in owning an RV. Just decide how legit you want to be.
RV Vagabond, I know from this and other posts, wnytaxman is a CPA and has much expertise on LLC and taxes. What is your opinion based on? Do you have a CPA or other financial or legal training?
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Old 08-14-2016, 12:00 PM   #14
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Thanks for the replies.
I understand the in's and out's of the plate and LLC ownership.

But I am mostly interested in knowing that if a "company" owns the RV (because of the LLC), does that mean that it is automatically a "company vehicle", therefore requiring a CDL ? Even though it is not being used commercially.
In reading the link above, it states that the CDL is Federally mandated, but we all see State officers enforcing that law..
Thanks
Simple answer -No-

We have many company vehicles over the years (still have 6-8) and the ownership does not make it a Commercial Vehicle the use Does.

JMHO,
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