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The importance of business succession planning

Those who operate family-owned businesses need to be sure that they have a business succession plan in place to allow for a peaceful transition should someone pass away unexpectedly.
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    January 28, 2014 /24-7PressRelease/ -- Many Ohio businesses are owned and operated by families. These businesses spend a great deal of time perfecting their services, hoping to establish a long-term connection with the communities where they live and work. Their attention to detail will often lead to a consistent customer base that they need in order to compete with other national chains who may be offering similar goods or services.

In some cases, the owners of these businesses pay very close attention to the day-to-day affairs of the business, but often do not have any plans for what may happen should one of the individuals unexpectedly pass away. They may believe that the others involved would simply carry on business as usual, however, without a business succession plan in effect, a death in the family could lead to problems that prevent the business from continuing.

These documents are generally part of a comprehensive estate plan of the business owner. This allows the individual to very clearly state his or her wishes concerning the business, and what interests should pass to other individuals involved in the business's operation. For this reason, it may be necessary to get a valuation of the entity, so the family knows exactly the amount of assets that they have, and ensure that the shares are handed down accordingly.

These businesses are often passed on to several other people who may have some experience with the companies. They may have worked in the industry for a long time in the hopes that they would take over someday. In some cases, the plans may describe how the business should be sold and profits divided among the remaining individuals. The clear guidance is often extremely beneficial to families who are already struggling at such a difficult time.

You do not want your family to have to guess about how you would like your business to continue. If you do not have a plan in place, it might lead to serious disputes among the other owners, which can cause problems for those that depend upon the business to make a living. This could bring an end to the company that you worked so hard to establish.

If you want to be sure that your business is passed down according to your wishes, you should speak to an experienced estate planning attorney to create a comprehensive business succession plan. An attorney can explain all of the steps that you will need to take, and help you learn more about some of the options available to you and your family.

Article provided by Mark Godbey & Associates
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