Building a successful business is an achievement in and of itself, oftentimes an achievement that can even outlive its founders and owners. Having a proper plan in place to ensure this achievement passes on as you desire is a critical part of an overall business plan, ensuring that nature or tragedy won’t disrupt your business’s operations.
Overall Succession Planning
Although never a pleasant conversation, each business should have proper and clear succession plans in place. Through continuity plans and emergency-operation plans, your business can be prepared to operate given the death or incapacity of its principals, ensuring continuous operations and minimal interjections from tragedy or life. Life Law Partners can also assist with buy-sell agreements, providing for automatic transfer of ownership shares to other owners or third parties in the event an owner separates from the company through death, incapacity or willful expulsion.
As a distinct service to our clients’ owners, directors and employees, we offer estate-planning tools to formalize those pieces of a business’s succession plan that are up to individuals to administer. The most common form of this tactic is ensuring that you have a valid will in place, so that when life does come full circle, your wishes (and not some legal statute) decide what happens to your assets, including your business assets. We can provide our clients with a full package of estate planning documents, including standard wills, powers of attorney and medical directives, as relevant and appropriate.
In almost all cases, our recommendation will be to incorporate a trust into your estate planning. A trust forms a distinct entity that can hold your owned assets indefinitely, even after your passing. Once you do pass away, the trust can then specify exactly how your assets, including your business assets, are passed along and controlled. The benefit of a trust is this happens immediately upon your passing and without court intervention, ensuring you a seamless and private transition of your assets according to your desires.