Your business wouldn’t be where it is today without you and your business partners at the helm. However, in the event of a sudden death, illness, or even retirement, many businesses find themselves scrambling to name a suitable replacement and dealing with unintended shareholders. At Bastion Estate Law, Robert Douglas and our legal team work with large corporations and small businesses to provide them with Calgary Business Succession Planning.
If you do not have a Business Succession Plan in place, your stake in the company can be distributed as part of your estate, divided among shareholders, or a combination of the two may take place. Many disputes take place in family-owned businesses, which often leads to unnecessary arguments and stress between siblings and other relatives.
When dealing with larger corporations, this state of unknown may cause key employees and/or clients to leave the company out of fear of instability. Without Business Succession Planning, the remaining shareholders could be left without the resources necessary to purchase your shares. Frequently, a spouse or child of a deceased shareholder will attain an ownership stake in the company. Their goals for the business may conflict with the other shareholders and employees. Lastly, if the existing shareholder was in a management role, the replacement/s may not be qualified to take over.
Finally, there are a number of strategies to structure business succession plans in a tax effective manner. By pre-planning how your shares are dealt with upon death, your estate can realize significant tax savings compared to an unplanned transition. Post-mortem planning opportunities, however, are extremely limited.
Estate planning for business owners often adds an additional layer of complexity to the planning process. The succession plans for the business that have been put in place (or often not put in place) will inform the preparation of an estate plan. Likewise, the estate plan will often impact the succession plan (again if any) in place for the business. Like estate plans, there are an almost limitless number of planning strategies available to achieve the succession plans and estate distribution wishes of the business owner.
A qualified professional estate planner has the necessary estate planning and business experience to ensure that the estate plan and the business succession plan are coordinated to achieve the client’s overall estate goals. The interplay of shareholders agreements, insurance policies, estate freezes, capital gains taxation, and overall estate equalization require careful review and consideration in light of existing corporate structures and agreements. Your qualified professional estate planner will recommend appropriate planning strategies to assist with aligning overall business and estate goals in an efficient and practical manner.
At Bastion Estate Law, Robert Douglas has experience with business and estate planning. We assist business owners with creating a Succession Plan that enables a smooth transition during troubling times. To create your Succession Plan, we consult with you and your shareholders to develop a plan that supports the successful continuation of the company following your death or incapacitation.
In addition to Business Succession Planning, complete Estate Planning is something that everyone must consider at all stages of their adult life. Ensuring your Will and Estate Plans remain current to your situation, as your life changes and evolves, is also very important. At Bastion Estate Law, we understand the importance of having these matters organized sooner rather than later. Our Estate & Wills Services include an analysis of your unique circumstances and family dynamics, providing solutions for your long-term objectives.
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Bastion Estate Law proudly offers timely, dependable and cost-effective legal services in Calgary Wills & Estate, Estate Administration, and Probate Law.
We offer fee-based unbiased estate planning advice for the majority of our Calgary Legal Services
as well as a Complimentary Initial Consultation to discuss your specific needs.