You have worked hard to start your business and build it into something successful. But without careful planning, it can all be lost if you are suddenly injured or can’t work. Or your business can be tangled up in probate court after you pass away, causing it to stay closed. The best way to plan for your future, or for those you wish to leave the business to, is to establish an Estate Plan.
Having a plan in place if you are hurt or pass away will help keep your business running when you can’t be there. Working with an estate planning attorney will help establish the best plan for you, but here are several options to explore:
1. Put Your Business in a Trust
Many business owners choose to place their business in a trust rather than a will. A will usually has to go through probate court, and this can tie up time and money that could be used for someone to run your business.
A trust will also help determine how to pass down your business to multiple beneficiaries. You can specify what percentage of the company you give to each heir.
2. Assign a Trustee or a Durable Power of Attorney
When your business is in a trust, you can have a named trustee continue to run your business if you pass away.
If you can no longer take care of the day-to-day operations, a power of attorney authorizes the person you choose (your agent) to handle specific matters. A durable power of attorney takes effect when a specified event happens. Your agent can take over situations such as payroll, paying bills, making financial decisions and payroll. You can retract the durable power of attorney when you can again run your business.
3. If you Have a Partner, You May Want a Buy-Sell Agreement
A buy-sell agreement outlines what would happen if you or your business partner dies or becomes incapacitated. Would your share of the business go to your partner or to your beneficiaries? Would they then run the company with your partner or sell their percentage? You should have an answer for these questions before an emergency arises.
Contact the experienced business estate planners at Estate and Probate Legal Group to discuss how to preserve your legacy for the next generation. Call us today at 630-864-5835.
AREAS WE SERVE: Cook, DuPage, Kane, Lake and Will counties