Building a business takes a great deal of time, effort, and financial investment. If you are a business owner – be it a startup, corporation, or nonprofit – you know that planning for the future is a tremendous part of building and operating a business successfully. Many people, unfortunately, overlook planning for contingencies like incapacitation or death, which can have a significant impact on your entrepreneurial goals. Check out Daic Law’s “Estate Planning Tips for Entrepreneurs” to learn more about protecting your business, your family, and your legal rights.
Entrepreneurs Overlook Estate Planning
According to Bloomwell, a legal resource for estate planning, a startling number of entrepreneurs don’t have estate planning documents as part of their business. Consider the following among 500 entrepreneurs surveyed:
- 80 percent did not have a financial power of attorney in place
- 65 percent had no estate planning documents at all
- 24 percent had a last will and testament
- 13 percent had a living trust
Estate Planning Tips for Entrepreneurs
For most entrepreneurs, building a business is an ongoing process. As your business grows, it is increasingly important to consider how it will factor into estate planning, and how the business’s assets or liabilities might affect your family if you become incapacitated or pass away. To plan ahead and protect yourself and your family, consider the following tips:
- Draft a Financial Power of Attorney: A financial power of attorney (FPOA) can offer great peace of mind if you find yourself ill, injured, incapacitated, or worse. With an FPOA, you can appoint an “agent” to manage the business finances in your absence, so you know that bills are paid, employees are paid, financial accounts are settled, and your business continues to operate smoothly.
- Explore a Living Trust: For some businesses, a living trust is a helpful way to avoid your business going through the Probate Court process. With a living trust, your property (assets) are held within the trust under specific guidance, restrictions, and instructions for how it will be managed upon your death.
- Include Your Business in Your Will: Many business owners fail to include their business in their last will and testament. In your will, appoint an executor to manage your business affairs upon your death. This can be the same executor managing your personal assets, or another party chosen exclusively for the business matters. Include your wishes and full instructions for how you want your business managed, operated, and owned.
- Grow Your Estate Plan with Your Business: As your business, family, and lifestyle evolves, so should your estate plan. Regularly review and revise your estate plan as needed to ensure your wishes are current and applicable.
If at any time you need help with estate planning, contact a Texas estate planning attorney to ensure your documents are legal, and in your best interests. Contact Daic Law to learn more about how you can protect your legal rights now, and in the future.