Savvy business owners know they have the best chance of meeting their business transition goals when they start early. Whether your company just opened its doors or retirement is right around the corner, you can get on track and stay there with the help of a business succession planning attorney experienced in your market. Whether you do business in West Virginia (WV), Kentucky (KY), or Ohio (OH), or elsewhere, you’ll learn what to expect from your business succession planning attorney in this article.
This blog is the last in a series of six designed to educate company owners about the business succession planning process. You can make the most of this information by reading my prior blogs, as well. Each focuses on a different aspect of ownership transition:
Business Succession Planning in WV: The Key to Your Future, which gives an overview of the topics covered in this series;
Defining Your Business Succession Planning Goals, designed to help business owners define their ownership transition goals;
Deciding on the Type of Business Ownership Transition, which provides valuable information about basic business transition models;
Start Your Internal Transition When You Identify Potential Successors, designed to help business owners identify and groom potential successors; and
Maximizing Your Company’s Value for Sale, designed to help business owners plan a solid strategy for boosting company value before a transition takes place
When to Find Your WV Business Succession Planning Attorney
Ideally, you engage your transition team early in the process. This allows you to reap the benefit of the advice of each member, helping to achieve your desired goals, as well as streamlining the transition process, increasing your company’s value, and minimizing or avoiding any potential tax consequences.
Even if you plan an internal transition or have already identified potential buyers, when it comes to business transactions, their interests will almost certainly conflict with yours. Therefore, you need to choose professionals who have extensive business transition experience in their respective fields.
a seasoned business succession planning attorney;
an accountant; and
a financial planner and/or life insurance agent
Each of these professionals plays a specific role in your business transition
Your WV Business Succession Planning Attorney
Your attorney plays a critical role in your transition team, serving as the point person who pulls together the financial and legal resources you need. The ideal candidate will also have deep familiarity in your market and in the business succession planning process across various industries.
In addition to serving as your team leader, your lawyer will advise you about the type of transition that will best achieve your goals, will negotiate the terms and conditions of your particular transition, and will draft the agreements for the deal. Your attorney will also advise you about the information and documents you should share or, conversely, keep confidential.
Other Members of Your Business Succession Planning Team
Your business accountant is a key player in your ownership transition team, as well. In addition to contributing valuable information about the company’s finances, the accountant typically has a great deal of information about potential tax implications (such as avoiding potential capital gains tax or state taxes), business creditors, and business vendors. Your accountant also may be a certified valuation expert or have significant knowledge that will be helpful in establishing the “going concern” value of your business.
A financial planner or life insurance agent also plays a central role in the business succession planning process. This team member can help ensure the transition meets your personal retirement goals and can help identify financing solutions to make the transition happen. Finally, almost all buy-sell agreements plans contemplate some level of life insurance on some or all of the relevant parties.
Find Your Business Succession Planning Attorney at Jenkins Fenstermaker
Moving to a new chapter in your life can be both exciting and overwhelming. However, when you establish a transition team of trustworthy professionals, you will feel confident that your interests are in good hands.
Remember, starting the business transition process early is essential to meeting your goals. Don’t wait any longer. Contact me, Stephen J. Golder, today by calling (866) 617-4736 or completing our firm’s Contact form. I have decades of experience as a WV business succession planning attorney, and I serve companies in Kentucky (KY) and Ohio (OH), as well.