Business Succession Planning

If you are the owner of a family business, making sure that it is successful now and into the future is one of your prime concerns. You may have one or more parents, uncles, aunts, siblings, children or cousins working in the business with you, each with a different percentage (or perhaps no) ownership interest in the business. Planning for the passage of ownership from one generation to the next involves sophisticated business, financial, tax and estate advice, and will require attention to family, leadership, and fairness concerns. Business succession plans often are fluid, and change as the younger generation matures. We will artfully guide you through the intricacies of planning for such a transition, through all of its stages. We have significant experience in developing and implementing business succession plans for dairy farms, retail businesses and manufacturing concerns.

Often the successor to the parents’ business operations is just one of several children. That child may have accumulated “sweat equity” by his or her efforts on behalf of the business. Determining whether that child receives his or her interest in the business at a discount from fair market value, as a gift or bequest, or in lieu of other assets that pass to the non-business heirs, are concepts and solutions that we will explore and develop with you. Providing for the non-business heirs through life insurance, their passive ownership of income-producing real estate leased to the business, or the distribution to them of the business heir’s payments for the purchase of business assets, are just a few of many strategies to consider.

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