Business and Family Succession


Business owners spend enormous amounts of time, energy and resources in building value within a business. A founder almost always wears several hats in the operation of the business, all of which contribute greatly to its success. However, the sudden loss of the owner can result in a disastrous loss of value to the business as the rudder to the ship has been lost. In addition, competitors can suddenly start cherry-picking customers, clients and key personnel, which further erodes profitability and value. All of this lost value can be a crushing blow to the business owner’s spouse and children, who have relied on the owner for their maintenance and support. It is essential that a solid and well thought out succession plan be in place to ensure against such a disaster. We have the experience and expertise to counsel the business owner in identifying key areas and key personnel that are critical to a succession plan. In addition, we can help craft the proper buy-sell and other agreements so that a plan is in place.

Family Business Succession

It is especially essential that a succession plan exist in a family business setting. In addition to the normal business succession issues that exist as described above, there are the family dynamics that come into play. Who will succeed to manage? Who will be the new owners of the family business? Will non-family members be allowed to participate in management or ownership? How with the estate be equalized if the family business is not distributed equally to the children? Our estate, tax and business expertise and years of experience in counseling client with family businesses allow us a unique opportunity to guide our family clients through these difficult issues.