Articles Posted in Business Succession

If you are a business owner, there is no doubt you have thought about what might happen to your business once you are gone. At McCulloch & Miller, we specialize in planning for the future, and business succession is no different.

Today’s blog covers some basics that could help you think through your business’s long-term ownership, but at the end of the day, the most important takeaway is to plan early and plan often. By ensuring you have put your company’s plan in writing, you can take care of the business that you have worked so hard to build. As always, we recommend contacting a Houston estate planning attorney to talk through the specifics of your plan and make sure it covers all of the necessary and relevant details.

Option One: Internal Sale

One popular option among those who own family business or have children and grandchildren is to hand over the business to a relative. This hand off could be in the form of a sale or a gift. In this scenario, it’s important to talk to an expert about how to minimize the possible tax consequences that you and your loved one could suffer. It’s also important to have open and frequent conversations with the family member you plan on naming as the recipient of the business. If that family member is not open to the transfer, the long-term success of your business will be threatened.

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For many business owners, the future of your business and life’s work is at the forefront of your mind. Business succession planning should also be at the forefront of your estate planning. Beyond the complexities of regular estate planning, business succession planning must carefully consider unique tax implications and asset protection strategies. In addition, choosing the right person to control your business—or the right plan for sale or closure—is imperative in ensuring your preferences and wishes are carried out.

Who Will Control Your Business?

When it comes to who will control your business, any business owner knows the right leader is crucial to the success of the company. If you can no longer run your business, you have several options.

First, you could transfer ownership to someone you’ve selected yourself. While many owners believe this will ensure their life’s work is carried out with their preferences in mind, owners should carefully consider who they should pass the business to and what training will need to be done. In addition, there are tax liability issues at play in the transfer of a business.

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McCulloch & Miller, PLLC is thrilled to officially announce that we are a part of the UpCity community of top B2B service providers!

At McCulloch & Miller, we help guide small business owners and investors through planning strategies such as asset protection, tax consequences, and viable retirement planning. Every investor is different, and no one plan is the same. That’s why we make sure to assist our clients in knowing all of their options to better protect their values, goals, and legacy, in the way that they feel is best.

UpCity is a resource that helps connect businesses to service providers they can trust. With more than 70,000 listed providers—from marketing agencies to accounting firms to HR consultants to IT specialists, and many more—1.5 million businesses (and counting) have visited UpCity to research and identify the best partner for their needs. 

For individuals who own a company, passing the business to another individual may not be at the forefront of their mind; but it should be. Succession planning involves creating a plan for another individual to either own or run the business after the person retires, becomes disabled, or dies. This process simply passes control of the business—or a share of the business—to another person through their estate plan. While passing a business to a loved one or employee may seem like an easy endeavor, it can often be more complicated than one would assume; for this reason, there are some detailed explanations to common Houston business succession questions below.

How Do I Pick a Successor for My Business?

Each business owner will look for different qualities when choosing a successor. For some, they know of a loved one that is excited to continue the success of the business. For others, individuals will select their successors from a pool of existing employees who have a hard work ethic and loyalty to lead the company. Business owners should carefully consult with potential successors to determine who they believe will manage the business best, once they have passed away. They should then name the successor in their estate plan as the new owner of the company.

There are few challenges as rewarding as running a successful business. Business owners pour years of hard work into pursuing passions that are about more than just making money. So it makes sense that many business owners prefer to have a say in what happens to their business after they leave it. That is why it is important for all Houston business owners to have a plan for succession in place in case something happens that prevents them from being able to run their business.

Like prudent estate planning, creating a business succession plan requires some thought. The options are numerous, and what is right for one person or business will not necessarily be right for another. Here are some things to consider when it comes to crafting a business succession plan:

Type of Business Entity

1.9.20“Running and owning a business is just like raising a child: Both are investments in the future, and both require a lot of time, resources and effort to raise successfully. One can argue that you would treat your business like you'd treat a child; you'd want it to succeed even after you've passed on or retired.”

When people think about estate planning, many just think about their personal property and their children’s future. If you have a successful business, you may want to think about having it continue after you retire or pass away.

Forbes’ recent article entitled “Why Business Owners Should Think About Estate Planning Sooner Than Later” says that many business owners believe that estate planning and getting their affairs in order happens when they’re older. While that’s true for the most part, it’s only because that’s the stage of life when many people begin pondering their mortality and worrying about what will happen next or what will happen when they're gone. The day-to-day concerns and running of a business is also more than enough to worry about, let alone adding one's mortality to the worry list at the earlier stages in your life.

9.24.18It takes time to build a business, and it can take just as long to create a strong succession plan.

Many business owners can’t imagine a life without the business they built, so they often postpone planning for their own retirement and the sale or transfer of the business. That doesn’t work out well.

There are steps to take when business owners decide to actively engage in planning for their business to continue to thrive after they step down. This article from Forbes, “Eight Factors To Consider Before Retiring From Your Business,” offers some useful tips.

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