Giving your children and grandchildren the legacy and pride of a family business can keep your nose to the grindstone for decades. Financial security, family harmony, and growing wealth together are some of the benefits of a family business. Legacies are meant to outlive the legacy makers. If you’re a business owner in California, don’t hesitate to consult an Orange County estate lawyer to help you plan for the future.
No one would blame you for wanting to put off estate planning; after all, time is money, and you’d rather be building your business and enjoying the fruits of your labor. However, a smooth transition planned by an Orange County estate lawyer saves time and money in the long run.
Passing your business on to your loved ones takes more than simply stating that you’d like your children to inherit your business. Essentially bestowing a business to your children may make them subject to a hefty gift tax that may greatly diminish their gain. You can avoid this pitfall and protect your wealth by having a lawyer help you plan your estate so your heirs get as much of your estate as possible.
An Orange County estate lawyer knows California business and estate law. He or she will remain objective and allow you to plan as you see fit. For example, your lawyer will help you create an equitable distribution among your children. However, if you don’t want to split your business evenly between all your children, or if you want to leave different assets to the children, an estate lawyer can help you with that, too.
Say you have two adult children who help you run the business, but one minor child still in junior high school. You want to make sure your children have what they need upon your passing. Your adult children will inherit and run the business, but there’s no expectation for your minor child to decide now if she wants to work in the family business. Your Orange County estate lawyer can help you create a trust for your youngest child so she benefits from the business without working for it or having a controlling interest.
An estate lawyer can also discuss the possibility of restructuring your company to ensure that company assets go to your children. If you have a sole proprietorship, your lawyer may discuss forming a corporation so you can separate the business’s assets and liabilities from your personal assets and liabilities, and portion interest into shares to divide equally among your children.
Consulting and hiring an Orange County estate lawyer is not just good for your peace of mind, but for the ongoing health of your business by shielding it from loss when you pass on. If you have questions of how to get started, contact our Orange County law firm at (949) 260-1400 to schedule a consultation.