4Thought Blog

4thought graphic - blog 2020

Selling Your Family Business: Tips to Minimize Taxes

Posted by Concannon Miller on Thu, Oct 6, 2022

When the owners of a family business are ready to sell, there are many considerations. Among the most important is handling the sale in a tax-wise manner.

In most cases, the buyer wants to make a direct purchase of the company's assets — as opposed to buying all the ownership interests in the legal entity used to conduct the business. A direct asset purchase allows the buyer to "step up" the tax basis of the acquired assets to reflect the purchase price. That means bigger post-purchase tax write-offs for depreciation, amortization, cost of goods sold and so forth.

A specific set of federal income tax rules applies to these transactions. Sellers who plan ahead can minimize their tax bills. Those who don't often pay too much to Uncle Sam and their state tax collectors.

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Topics: Succession planning, Business Valuation

Looking to Grow Your Family Business? A Strategic Checklist to Consider

Posted by Concannon Miller on Thu, May 26, 2022

Profit growth and business expansion are two key goals for many family businesses. In order to successfully reach your targets, however, you must control the growth.

If you undergo an undisciplined expansion, you'll run the risk of burning through too much cash too quickly, diluting resources, leaving projects unfinished and destroying morale.

Whether you're planning an ambitious expansion, considering a merger or acquisition, developing a new growth strategy, or looking at a few minor tweaks to boost revenue, plan your moves carefully.

As you move forward with the strategy, continually evaluate the game plan by asking the following questions:

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Topics: Succession planning

Family Business Succession: Compensating Children Not in the Business

Posted by Concannon Miller on Thu, Sep 30, 2021

Often, the senior generation of a family business goes through the process of choosing one of its offspring as the successor to lead the company in the future. Usually, the chosen successor is given the title of president or CEO.

For a period of time, he or she will work under the supervision of the senior family member, who may have founded the business. Eventually, the successor takes over complete operating control of the business.

This means that the fate of the future operation of the business is in the chosen sibling's hands and, naturally, he or she will be compensated accordingly. But what about the other siblings who weren't chosen?

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Topics: Succession planning

4 Guiding Principles for a Family-Business Succession Plan

Posted by Concannon Miller on Thu, Aug 26, 2021

Many successful companies are family owned and run. And there's a good reason for it. It takes passion to run a profitable business -- especially a smaller one.

A family-owned company can benefit from the special dedication of a founder at the helm and possibly a spouse, siblings and children working alongside. But the devotion and dedication to the business also needs to apply to the company's succession plan.

Once you've worked to build a business, it's important to make sure your legacy is protected. A swift and seamless transition in ownership is one of the things to consider well before you choose to step down. But there's a critical question to ask yourself: Will family members be prepared to take the lead on the ownership team?

Here are some considerations when structuring a good succession plan for your family-owned business:

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Topics: Succession planning

How Buy-Sell Agreements Can Promote Business Owners’ Estate Plan Objectives

Posted by Concannon Miller on Tue, Aug 3, 2021

If you own a business, you're probably familiar with the protections provided by buy-sell agreements. But do you know how important these documents can be to an estate plan?

Because buy-sell agreements specify whether, and under what circumstances, owners' interests may be transferred, they can help you control the ultimate disposition of your business and achieve other important estate and succession planning goals.

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Topics: Succession planning, Business Valuation, Estate and Trust Services

Family Business: Why You Should Hold an Estate Plan Meeting

Posted by Concannon Miller on Tue, Jan 26, 2021

If you're a business owner and a high-net-worth individual, you may want to gather your family members together to discuss the details of your estate plan.

This can be especially important if you own a business that employs family members. These meetings are a little like the Scottish clan gatherings held hundreds of years ago by clan chiefs to discuss their succession and inheritance plans.

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Topics: Succession planning, Estate and Trust Services

Succession Planning: Who Will Run Your Business After You?

Posted by Concannon Miller on Thu, Jul 16, 2020

If you're a business owner, do you have a plan in place that names who'll follow you as head of your company? You may feel you're too busy running the business today to waste time on long-term plans that seem so distant.

But there may be more reasons than you think to make decisions, some of which will benefit you today. A well-thought-out plan will:

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Topics: Succession planning

Family Business: 7 Tips for Selecting a Successor

Posted by Concannon Miller on Tue, Dec 31, 2019

Long ago, in some countries, kingdoms used to be passed to the oldest child — and often, the oldest male. While this may have had advantages in ancient monarchies, it has no place in family businesses.

In the case of family-owned businesses, it is still sometimes the practice to install the oldest child, and the oldest son, as the successor CEO.

Experience shows that this often leads to inefficiencies and mistakes that jeopardize the continued existence of these family businesses. An old saying, "shirtsleeves to shirtsleeves in three generations," describes the fact that many family businesses that are passed down to children and then grandchildren tend not to survive through the third generation.

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Topics: Succession planning

Selling Your Business? How to Increase Business Value (Video)

Posted by Andrea Brady and Andy Kahn on Thu, Nov 21, 2019

Most businesses that go to market don’t sell, largely because they’re not attractive enough.

How can you get top dollar for your business? We use the tested and trusted Value Builder System to help business owners discover steps to improve their business value. Improving your Value Builder Score may more than double your pre-tax sale price.

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Topics: Succession planning

Business Succession Best Practices – Family Transfer or Third Party Sale (Video)

Posted by Andrea Brady and Andy Kahn on Tue, Oct 15, 2019

A business owner's net worth and future income depends on the value of your business, whether you plan to sell it or pass it along to the next generation.

As you look towards your future, succession planning is the key to growing and getting the most out of your business.

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Topics: Succession planning

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