In Montana, the process of registering a car through a limited liability company (LLC) is very similar to registering a car through a regular corporation. However, there are some important differences that should be taken into account before setting up an LLC in Montana.
First and foremost, LLCs are not recognized by the state of Montana as “corporations”. They are simply legal entities that have been created for the purpose of holding title to one or more vehicles. As such, LLCs cannot issue stock shares and do not pay corporate income tax. If they are used solely for personal vehicle registration, however, they can still enjoy all the benefits of being a tax-free pass-through entity, including the ability to deduct business expenses on Schedule C.
Second, while they are technically not required to register their cars in your name as a resident of Montana, it is strongly recommended that you do so if you want to make sure your car’s registration stays current. Apart from that, however, it doesn’t really matter which method you choose to register your car through an LLC – just as long as you meet the requirements for doing so.
Regardless of whether you choose to go through the DMV or your LLC, the requirements are the same:
- You must have liability insurance on your vehicle. Speeding tickets and accidents can affect insurance eligibility, so shopping around for quotes is essential before deciding on an insurer.
- You need proof of identification to register a car in Montana. You can get a list of documents from the DMV for authorized identification. It includes items like a passport from the USA, a birth certificate from the USA, and a driver’s license from the state where you live.
- Vehicle owners must have an address in Montana, where they receive their registration renewal notices, so if you don’t reside in Montana but want to register your car there, make sure to include an address where you can receive mail. The address can be a post office box, your LLC or a friend’s house.
The Easiest Way To Register a Car In Montana
If you’ve ever tried to register a car in Montana, you know how much time and energy it takes. First, you must complete the necessary paperwork at the county clerk’s office. After that, you must wait for hours while they process it. The state has made it more accessible in recent years by allowing people to register their vehicles through a Montana LLC. But even that process requires going in person to the DMV. For the average Joe, this can be inconvenient enough that it’s worth paying a few hundred extra dollars every few years if they can mail in their application.
But what if you’re all registered with your LLC already? Then it becomes a question of whether you need to go in person or if you can do all of the paperwork yourself over the internet. The answer is yes, and no.
Yes, because there are certain things only an employee at the DMV or county clerk’s office can do for you. Without them, you won’t be able to change your address or get license plates for your vehicle. No, because Montana allows a streamlined online registration system for LLCs that automatically handles many of these details for you. You still need to print off your application and mail it in with a check showing that you have paid the required fee.
For those who don’t want to go through all these processes, using a Montana registered agent like 5 Star Registration is the way to go. If you wish to, your agent can also explain all the things to know about registering your car in Montana. These agents are knowledgeable and experienced in the field, and they will make sure that your car is registered properly. They will also make sure that your car is insured, if it is not already.