Does an LLC Protect Rental Property from Lawsuits?

Investing in rental properties can be a lucrative venture, but it also comes with its fair share of risks. One of the primary concerns for rental property owners is the potential for lawsuits. To mitigate these risks, many real estate investors choose to structure their rental properties as limited liability companies (LLCs). But can an LLC truly shield your rental property from lawsuits? In this article, we’ll explore the concept of LLC protection and its effectiveness in safeguarding your rental property.

Understanding Limited Liability Companies (LLCs)

A limited liability company (LLC) is a business structure that combines the limited liability features of a corporation with the flexibility and tax advantages of a partnership. By forming an LLC, rental property owners can separate their personal assets from those of the business, reducing personal liability in the event of a lawsuit.

Personal Liability Protection

One of the key benefits of structuring your rental property as an LLC is the personal liability protection it provides. When a rental property is owned by an LLC, the liability for any lawsuits arising from the property’s operations is generally limited to the assets of the LLC itself. This means that your personal assets, such as your home, savings, or other investments, are shielded from being targeted in a lawsuit related to the rental property.

However, it’s important to note that the personal liability protection offered by an LLC is not absolute. There are circumstances in which a court may “pierce the corporate veil” and hold the LLC owner personally liable. These circumstances usually involve situations where the LLC is not operated as a separate legal entity from the owner, such as commingling personal and business finances or engaging in fraudulent activities. Therefore, it’s crucial to maintain proper legal and financial separation between yourself and the LLC to preserve the liability protection it offers.

Property Insurance and Additional Protection

While forming an LLC provides an essential layer of personal liability protection, it is not a substitute for adequate property insurance. Insurance coverage is a critical component of risk management for rental property owners. It can protect you from various liabilities, including property damage, personal injury claims, and lawsuits arising from accidents on the premises.

By combining an LLC structure with comprehensive property insurance coverage, you create a multi-layered approach to risk management. The LLC shields your personal assets from lawsuits targeting the rental property, while insurance provides additional financial protection and peace of mind.

Professional Advice and Compliance

To ensure you maximize the benefits of an LLC in shielding your rental property from lawsuits, it is advisable to seek professional advice from an attorney or a qualified financial advisor. They can guide you through the process of setting up an LLC, assist with compliance requirements, and provide valuable insights into local laws and regulations.

Furthermore, maintaining proper compliance with legal and financial obligations associated with an LLC is crucial. This includes filing required paperwork, keeping accurate records, and adhering to any tax obligations. Failure to comply with these obligations can undermine the liability protection offered by the LLC, potentially exposing your personal assets.


Structuring your rental property as an LLC can provide significant personal liability protection, shielding your personal assets from lawsuits related to the property. However, it’s important to recognize that the protection offered by an LLC is not foolproof. Maintaining proper legal and financial separation, along with adequate property insurance coverage, is essential to strengthen the shield against potential liabilities.

Ultimately, the decision to form an LLC should be made after careful consideration of your specific circumstances and in consultation with professionals. By combining the advantages of an LLC with comprehensive insurance coverage, you can take proactive steps to safeguard your rental property investments and protect your personal wealth from potential legal challenges.

Video Transcript

Can You Hide from Lawsuits by Using LLCs to Own Property?

This question arose from Bruce Corter, who added a comment on YouTube, and I will read that comment here. And this is a bit of a paraphrase, but it says, “What is your opinion on some lawyers justifying the use of LLCs to hide ownership of real estate properties under the theory that what can’t be seen can’t be sued?”

I believe this is a flawed theory, and here is why. If an LLC owns real estate, that LLC can be seen, and it can be sued. Why? Because it is registered with the state. So, when you commence a lawsuit, you can sue the LLC and the address of the LLC. Once that lawsuit is started, you send discovery requests. Discovery requests can ask questions like, who is the owner of this LLC? Who is the president of this LLC? Provide a copy of all of the bylaws, operating agreements, and meeting minutes of the governors or owners of the LLC, and even request other information relevant to the lawsuit. So, yes, there is a little bit of a slowing down of somebody finding out who owns an LLC if you have real estate owned by an LLC, but it doesn’t stop somebody who is trying to commence a lawsuit. If I want to commence a lawsuit against an LLC and the manager or owner of that LLC, I will just sue the LLC, and then I will send discovery requests, and they have 30 days to provide either answer to all the discovery requests or objections to why legally, they are not required to provide answers.


So, I don’t believe you can hide the owner of real estate or the manager of real estate simply by putting it into an LLC. You may be able to provide or hide that from public knowledge, but once a lawsuit starts, discovery can get at it. The same is true of trust. I have celebrity clients who will own real estate inside of a trust. A trust does not have to be registered with the state, and that means that they can make up the name of the trust, so it might be called Green Acres Trust. Nobody knows the celebrity that actually is behind the trust. But once you sue the trust, you can find out who the parties are involved in that trust.


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