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Planning for the Acquisition, Growth, Sale or Succession of a Family Business


For some families, "business planning" is a part of their "estate planning."  Most business planning does not start with estate plan considerations, but they typically evolve  into an estate planning process as the years go by.


  • Buying or Selling Your Business   If you are looking to buy a business, we can assist you with the due diligence process required to make sure you are truly getting what you are paying for. We can also work with you to find financing for your acquisition. True estate planning is usually not an issue here unless you are considering the inclusion of family members as a part of your business. If so, you will most definitely want to consider estate and gift tax consequences of your acquisition. Selling a business will very likely be a process that must be worked into your estate plan. For example, taxes on capital gains can be significantly reduced by using a charitable trust as a tool in the sale process. A sale or gift of your interest in the family business to your children must take into consideration any gift or estate tax consequences. The net proceeds of any sale need to be carefully invested to assure financial security for your retirement years. 

  • Setting Up Your Business Entity   Whether you are purchasing a pre-existing business or starting one from scratch, the selection of your business entity is a very important decision that must be made very early in the process. There are a multitude of choices, including sole proprietorships, partnerships, limited partnerships, corporations, joint ventures and limited liability companies. Choosing the wrong entity can create difficulty for you in the future as you deal with creditors, look to pull money out of your business or eventually sell your business or transfer it to the next generation. Our attorneys and staff can help you make the right choice. 

  • Networking with Other Professionals   Good business planning requires assistance from several trusted advisors. We can provide you with quality legal counsel on most of your business needs. However, there are times when your needs are in a field of law that we are not well versed, in which case we will connect you with a specialist to meet your need. You must also look to qualified tax and insurance counsel in structuring your business. We look forward to the opportunity to build relationships with these other professionals that you may have already retained. If you are not already associated with other professionals, we can help you find the players you need to increase the chances of success for your business venture.

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