Business Succession Planning

The concerns of a closely held or family owned business are complex. In addition to the normal operating issues and day-to-day management of the business, business owners must coordinate the succession of their businesses to their descendants. The business owner faces multiple challenges to preserve the family business -- competitive business pressures, taxes, liquidity, debt, and potential disagreements among family members on the direction and management of the business. The different expectations and perspectives of children who work in the business and those who are out of the business need to be addressed.

We help our clients carry out their objectives and evaluate their options. We coordinate with their advisors on business needs, retirement plans, and the transfer of business to their children and descendants in a way that maintains family harmony and is tax efficient. In the alternative, we assist in the development and implementation of an exit strategy from the business.

Our services include:

  • Advising on the sale of the business to children or unrelated parties
  • Designing plans that help to “equalize” inheritances between children who work in the business and those who do not
  • Drafting buy-sell agreements
  • Reducing potential transfer and income taxes
  • Addressing liquidity needs, particularly with regard to the payment of estate taxes
  • Planning family meetings that facilitate communication between and among generations
  • Coordinating with the clients’ financial advisors and accountants