Business Succession Planning
A Successful Exit Overview
Eventually, every business owner must decide how he or she plans to “exit” the business known as business succession planning. There are, of course, two basic ways to exit to do this: Either it can be sold or it can be gifted (e.g. to one’s family). However, what most business owners are unaware of is the plethora of options and sub-questions that attend these two basic exit strategies. Many estate planning tools are used to transfer one’s business interest, either to one’s family or to a third party purchaser.
Many questions need to be answered when deciding which of these business succession planning tools is appropriate for one’s circumstances. For example:
- Does the business owner plan to retire or work until he or she dies?
- Does he or she plan to transfer the business to the children, or a third party?
- If so, when—during the owner’s lifetime or at death?
- Or maybe a combination of these?
- Does the business owner need liquidity, or cash flow, after the transfer of the interest?
- Is it likely the business will grow substantially before the owner’s death?
- Does the business owner have a taxable estate? How many other owners are there?
- Does the owner desire to exercise some control over the business even after it is transferred to the children/third party?
These are just a sample of the questions that need to be answered when the attorney helps the business owner craft a plan that suits his or her business, personal, and tax objectives in connection with transferring the business to the next generation of the family or to a third party. Our Q&As on this site will help navigate some general answers to some of these questions.
Business Succession Questions and Answers
- The four goals of business succession planning
- Selling or transferring a business to family members
- What is a family business?
- What issues may arise if I decide to sell my business?
- How to understand the basics of a family business
- Is it easy to give my child my business?
- What is the relationship between a family trust and my family business?
- Who can I transfer my business to?
- Business succession planning and when it should begin
- What is a buy-sell agreement?
- If a major asset is an interest in a closely-held business
- How do buy-sell agreements affect business estate taxes?
- How to select fair price with owner in buy-sell agreement
- The disadvantages of using a buy-sell agreement?
- How to fund the purchase price for a buy-sell agreement
- Buy-sell agreements and possible tax consequences
- When should my business use stock purchase agreement?
- Over 20 years of business consulting experience as a CPA enables our firm to understand your business
- Advanced education obtained in a Masters in Tax enables our tax law firm to plan for or eliminate any estate tax ramifications surrounding your business succession plan.
- Our firm has an innate ability to understand family dynamics including how to effectively deal with any sense of entitlement or sibling rivalry displayed by the founders children.
- Our firm’s legal education and mergers and acquisition experience enable him to effectively structure a sale or gifting scenario with equal effectiveness.
- Our staff and of enrolled agents, CPAs, of Counsel Attorneys allow the firm to bring the highest level of service at competitive price points.