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How Small Business Owners Can Benefit from Estate Planning in Florida


Planning for your business oftentimes goes hand in hand with your personal estate planning. You have worked hard to make your business a success, which is why it is important to plan for your business’s future from a succession standpoint, too.

As a small business owner, you must make more decisions regarding your personal and business assets than an average person creating an estate plan. A small business owner needs to plan for the continued operation of their business in the event of their unexpected death or incapacity.

For many business owners, their business is the largest asset in their estate.  This means it is an integral part of your personal estate plans and it is critical to plan for:

  • Reducing taxes associated with transferring your business to someone else; and
  • Making provisions for the continued operation and management of your business after your death or incapacity.

How an Attorney Can Help

Planning for the future of your business can be a complicated asset to plan for. After all, you need to ensure the continued operation of your business and choose the person to take over your business in the event of your death or incapacity.

As a small business owner in Florida, you can benefit from a variety of estate planning strategies, including:

  • Governing Documents. For many families, the business’s governing documents, such as a partnership agreement, operating agreement, or bylaws, may not have ever been put in writing. It is essential to create an agreement that controls what happens if one or more of the business partners retire, become incapacitated, or die.  For example, if your business partner dies, do you want to remain in business with your partner’s surviving spouse?   Maybe not.
  • Powers of Attorney. This document allows you to select the person who will take over and protect your interests in the business in the event of your incapacity.
  • Trusts. A well-drafted Trust will ensure that your business interest is transferred to your beneficiaries after your passing. Depending on the governing document, there may be transfer restrictions to other parties, including a trust (be sure to review those governing documents first, if any).
  • A Buy/Sell Agreement. You can create a buy/sell agreement, which allows your business partners to assume control of your business interest upon your death, and also allows your beneficiaries to retain your share in the business.

If you are a small business owner in Florida, you can benefit from integrating the above-mentioned estate planning strategies into your overall estate plan. This can be a complicated process, which is why you should consult with a St. Petersburg business succession attorney. Let our lawyers at Legacy Protection Lawyers, LLP, review your particular case and advise you on your options. Call us at 727-471-5868.

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