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What do business owners need to know about estate planning?

On Behalf of | Apr 29, 2024 | Estate Planning

When you own a business, you need to plan for what will happen to it after you die.

Estate planning involves managing and protecting your assets. As an owner, it is important to understand the key considerations of this process for your company.

Business structure

Your business may be a partnership, limited liability company, corporation or sole proprietorship. Each structure has different implications for estate planning, so knowing which structure can protect you from potential risks is important.

You must also decide who will take over the operation when you can no longer run it. This person may be a family member, professional partner, or someone you trust. Creating a clear succession plan ensures a smooth transition of ownership.

Asset protection

You want to shield your business assets from potential creditors or legal liabilities that can arise after your death. Setting up a trust to hold your company assets can protect you from creditors and facilitate the asset transfer to your chosen beneficiaries. This balance is key to ensuring your business’s future.

Tax considerations

Taxes can significantly impact your estate and your business. Proper planning can cut the tax burden on your heirs. For example, you may want to take advantage of tax-saving strategies such as gifting company shares or setting up a buy-sell agreement. These strategies can help reduce taxes and ensure that your business thrives after you’re gone.

Business valuation

Knowing the value of your business is important for estate planning purposes. An accurate valuation determines its worth for tax and inheritance purposes. Understanding this process and its importance enables you to make informed, knowledgeable decisions.


Estate planning is not a one-time event. You should regularly review and revise your plan as circumstances change. Address changes in your business, your family situation or the law. Staying proactive can ensure that people know your wishes, protecting your company for future generations.

Taking the time to plan not only ensures the continued success of your enterprise for years to come but also provides a sense of security and peace of mind, knowing that your business is in good hands.