Family Farm Succession Planning – Now is the Time To Start

July 30, 2010

When things are running smoothly on the farm (and especially when they’re not), it’s easy to delay planning for the future of your agri-business. But now is the best time to get started. Farm succession planning will guide you and your family as you prepare to include multiple generations in one family farm business.

Successful farm succession planning includes many components: personality assessment, estate planning, farm structure set-up and management, and transition plans. Your family will need to consider how the farm legacy will be passed on to future generations, taking into account those who work both on and off the farm. You’ll have to consider your own family’s version of “fair” while making sound business decisions.

Some farmers have begun to consider this process through the Farm Journal’s Legacy Project, which will give you some thoughts to ponder as you start planning for the future of your farm.  Eventually though, you will need to consult an attorney to work through your business structure and estate plans. My best advice: consult an attorney before circumstances force the issue, and you’ll save yourself and your family a lot of time, stress, and cost.

For a consultation about your farm planning issues, email the Law Office of Shawn Vogt Sween, LLC.

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