Farm Succssion Planning

October 6, 2009   Estate Planning

Planning Solutions for Families in Agriculture

By Matthew A. Tavrides, J.D.
Estate, Business Succession and Wealth Preservation Planning are issues of immediate importance to farmers and ranchers. Not surprisingly, like most Americans the vast majority of the nation’s farmers and ranchers have no succession or estate plan in place. Although unlike other Americans, these families have much more at stake than a few mutual funds and a life insurance policy.The U.S. food and farming system contributes nearly $1 trillion to our national economy, more than 13 percent of the gross domestic product, and employs 17 percent of the labor force. Eighty-six percent of America’s fruits and vegetables are grown near metropolitan regions, where they are continuously threatened by development. Cattle are a significant economic driver in rural communities and are produc...
October 13, 2009   Estate Planning

Farm Succession Planning- What We’ve Learned Since San Antonio

By Ted Gudorf, J.D. and David Beckett, J.D.
At last year’s WealthCounsel symposium in San Antonio, special emphasis was placed on the succession crisis that is looming for farmers nationwide. At the conference, we learned that over one-fourth of all farmers and half of all agricultural landlords are age sixty-five or older. Because the data suggests that only a fraction of the nation’s farmers have a succession or estate plan in place, the time to address these issues is now. It is important for all advisors to sound the alarm regarding the need for farmers to work with an estate planning team to properly manage assets and the intergenerational transfer of those assets. In this article, we will address the counseling-oriented, client-centered team approach, which, in the days since San Antonio, we have found particularly...
April 10, 2010   Inheritance

Are We Helping to Pass on the Farm?

By John R. Baker, J.D.
An interesting quote but, what does all this have to do with farming, farm business suc­cession planning, estate planning and pre­serving wealth? What did Aristotle mean by this? What he meant was that there is nothing intrinsic in a tree, an inanimate object, that, when falling to the forest floor, transmutes it into a Greek trireme with oars and sails and a ram. Obviously when a tree falls to the forest floor it decomposes. No ship, no oars, no sails, just rotting wood.   Aristotle could just as well said, “If the farming art were in the land, it would produce the same results by nature.” Simply stated, there is nothing intrinsic in land, equipment, buildings, facilities or machinery that transmutes these inanimate objects into a farm business. As we all know, fa...
January 20, 2012   Giving,   Inheritance,   Asset Protection Planning,   Business Planning

Succession Planning and the Family Farm

By Todd N. Hallock, J.D. and Sara Nelson Hallock, J.D.
“Those who labour in the earth are the chosen people of God, if ever he had a chosen people, whose breasts he has made his peculiar deposit for substantial and genuine virtue.”  - Thomas Jefferson The farmer as virtuous is well-established in our national conscious and reverence for the family farm sets planning for it apart from other types of family owned businesses. Even children who do not plan to actively participate in farming have a deep emotional attachment to the farm. According to the USDA, approximately 96 percent of the 2.2 million farms are classified as “family farms.” The average age of a farm operator is 57 and the fastest growing segment is those ove...
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