You have invested a lot of time and money into making your family-owned business or closely held corporation a success, and you want to make sure that it continues to thrive after you’re no longer involved in daily operations. The experienced estate planning and business lawyers at Morton & Gettys can assist with business succession planning and help you do just that.

The key question to consider: Do you want the business to continue under family ownership or do you want it to be sold to provide for a spouse or children? Once you have talked with your family and determined an answer, Morton & Gettys can help create a plan to execute it.

Family Limited Partnerships are one tool that’s becoming increasingly popular in business succession planning. They allow families to move assets from one generation to the next and avoid the harsh impact of excessive estate taxes by making the transfers incrementally, over a number of years. The partnerships also have the advantage of protecting your assets from creditors and against lawsuits while you are alive.

For a business with a single owner, a key planning question often becomes, which of the heirs would want to be involved in the business or have the skills to run it? If only one of several heirs meets those qualifications, Morton & Gettys can help create a plan to transfer the business to that heir while making sure other heirs receive an equal distribution of assets.

For businesses with multiple owners, planning should begin with a thorough examination of the company’s governing documents. A buy/sell agreement is crucial. Without one, the fate of the company is determined by laws governing buyout ownership in the event of one owner’s death, and those laws might not necessarily reflect the owners’ wishes.

Whether your company is the smallest of mom and pop operations or a mid-size business upon whom people rely for their livelihoods, the lawyers at Morton & Gettys can help you create a business succession plan for its future.

Joseph L. Raad

Senior Counsel

P 803.366.3429  F 803.366.4044