Business owners and entrepreneurs in Colorado and elsewhere typically have unique needs when it comes to estate planning. If a business owner passes away without having plans in place, it can cause major problems for shareholders, partners and others with a vested interest in the company. Taking the time to create and update estate plans is vitally important to cover what will happen to assets in the event of a business owner’s passing. A few suggestions are as follows:
Keep key documents organized
Estate planning documents can include more than just a basic will and testament. Other documents may include a power of attorney, a trust, a living will and more. As such, a business owner will want to ensure he or she has these documents drafted properly, notarized and stored in a safe place, such as a safe deposit box. The individual will also want to ensure estate administrators, beneficiaries and family members know where the documents are located so they can access when the time comes.
Review one’s plan periodically
It’s not enough to simply create estate planning documents and file them away without looking at them again. Any number of life changes can warrant a review of wills and other estate planning documents, such as marriage, divorce, etc. A business owner needs to make sure he or she has updated any documents to comply with his or her wishes regarding the estate and its assets.
Perhaps one of the most important aspects a business owner will have to account for upon his or her passing is who will take over the company. Business succession planning is a must for business owners and entrepreneurs in order to specify who will be responsible for running the company. Often, a company’s valuation and investor returns can actually increase if a succession plan is in place.
These are but a few of the issues business owners and entrepreneurs must consider with regards to their estates and their businesses. By working with an experienced estate planning attorney, a Colorado business owner can protect what he or she has worked so hard to achieve. A solid plan will also help ensure his or her wishes are respected with regards to asset distribution and business succession.