Taking place in Ohio’s first state capital, Chillicothe, Session 5 presented the AgriPOWER class a diverse perspective to production agriculture, as well as knowledge and insight for useful skills. Whether it was touring a 1,000 head dairy, witnessing a timber harvesting operation, or learning about conflict management techniques, there was valuable information to obtain by all in attendance.
One of the topics presented to the group involved succession planning. How many of you have that plan in place? How many have started and are on your way? How many have yet to have a conversation?
When working through these details, here are some discussions to consider:
Your business partner, if applicable:
- Understand the partner’s intentions to retire, how will the partnership dissolve, how the assets, liabilities will be split
Children – those taking over the farm and those who aren’t:
- Is there an heir to take over the operation?
- Will the heir have to buy you out? Will they have to buy out their other siblings?
- Develop a plan for how you want to treat the children and/or grandchildren fair and equitable… Those are not always the same.
- Make sure you and your spouse are on the same page and are in agreement with each other’s wishes
- What happens in the event of death or divorce? What protections are in place?
- Understand all tax implications when you retire or pass on.
- Provide legal protections to the operation and assets.
Your insurance provider:
- For recommendations on adequate life insurance and/or long term care
- What happens when you go into a nursing home?
- What happens if you have a tragic accident? Will the operation survive and how?
- Understand how your debt is structured.
- Are your notes assumable for the next generation?
- Are they willing to work with your heirs once you are gone?
- What is the structure of you lease agreement?
- The average age of the US farmer is 58½; the average age of the landowner is 65. The intention of your landowner’s heirs can play a key role in the transition planning of your operation.
Whether you already have a succession plan in place, or just getting started, Nationwide offers a service that can review your current plan, or help you get started on the right path. Through the Land as Your Legacy program, the representatives at Nationwide will guide you on a plan/structure to put in place to satisfy the needs of all parties involved. The time Nationwide invests, the advice they lend, are all free of charge to you.
Do not let these ideas and discussions lead to frustration. Find your starting point and set down the path to see the operation remain viable. We all understand that the best made plans don’t always pan out, but the old cliché that it’s better to plan and not work out than not plan at all.
Hope for the Future: AgriPOWER Session 5 blog by Vince Untied