Business owners generally have more responsibility than the average person does. Not only do they have to take care of themselves, their home and their family, but also their business and the people that work for it.
When it comes to estate planning, business owners often have to take special steps in order to ensure the smooth transition of ownership and prevent issues from arising. What are common special considerations for business owners trying to plan their estate?
You have to plan for new business ownership
The most obvious issue that business owners face is transferring ownership of the company. Depending on the structure of the business, it could be relatively complex to pass the property on to someone else.
Transferring shares of ownership, hiring and training a family member or putting paperwork in place to have certain assets transfer on your death to the new owner of the business named in your last will are all ways to transfer business.
Do you want to protect the company or just its value?
If you feel like you have an obligation to the community or to your employees, using a trust in your estate plan can prevent your heirs and beneficiaries from selling or liquidating the business, possibly eliminating valuable jobs from your local community. If your only concern is preserving the financial value of the business, a trust may not be necessary.
There are other concerns, like succession planning, that are unique to business estate planning. Getting advice and guidance can prevent your loved ones from experiencing hardship or losses due to the improper transfer of business ownership after your death.