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Business Owners Through the Generations: Estate Planning and You

Posted by Lizette Sundvick | Feb 05, 2023 | 0 Comments


Estate Planning is never static; it grows and changes along with you. When you're a business owner, it adds another level of complexity that you need to maintain to ensure everything with you and your business remains up to date. Depending on where you are in your life journey (and the life of your business), there are certain Estate Planning elements you should be aware of and questions you should ask yourself along the way. 

Which generation applies to you?

Baby Boomers and Gen X

Where you might be:

  • Ready to retire or already retired (Baby Boomer)
  • Thinking about retiring early or serious about properly planning for eventual retirement (Gen X)
  • Sold your business or would like to down the road
  • Envisioning what's next for you after the business

What you should be considering:

  • If you're keeping the business for a while longer, consider coordinating the business ownership into a trust. This protects you and your business from creditors. You get to choose who will run the business or inherit it; if you pass, it will avoid probate.
  • If you sell the business or accrue investments outside of your business, consider protecting your hard-earned nest egg with asset protection trusts and entities. Read more about the Nevada Spendthrift Trust here and click here to learn why you should talk to your Estate Planning Attorney about asset protection.
  • It's time to think about to whom you want to pass on your business. It might be hard to find a qualified and interested person, so start this early. Discuss exit planning/succession planning with your business attorney.
  • If you have more than one child, and you plan on passing on your business to one of them, how will you offset the inheritance to the one(s) who will not inherit the business?
  • If/when you sell the business (or have already sold it), what will you do with the profits from the sale? Think about what's next for you in life and how you'll fund it.

Where you might be:

  • Busy starting or growing a business
  • Trying to be mindful of work-life balance, especially if you're raising children
  • Working entirely digitally/remotely

What you should be considering:

  • If you don't have a trust, create one and include your business in it. It allows you to maintain control of your property and business, takes care of you and your loved ones if you're disabled, specifies who you want to receive an inheritance, and saves your family from going through lengthy and costly probate court after you pass.
  • Your business is an asset; ensure it's guarded through asset protection. If something happens in your business, it can drastically affect your life, your future, and your loved ones' inheritance. Asset protection not only protects your business in case of bankruptcy or lawsuits while you own it, it also protects your business in the future if you pass it to your child. Read more about it and its benefits here.
  • What are your plans for the business? Are you keeping it a one-person show, growing it into a large company, selling it in five years? The answer determines the steps you need to take in your Estate Planning and business planning.

Looking towards the future and setting up protections, especially as a business owner, is vital no matter where you are in your journey. Being a business owner of my Estate Planning practice over the last two decades, I understand the mindset and the ins and outs of protecting a business. I enjoy sitting down with my clients to help them assess where they are, where they want to be, and create action steps to get them there (and protect them along the way). If you'd like to schedule a consultation to discuss your journey and what you can do to protect your assets, click here or call the office at (702) 384-3767.

About the Author

Lizette Sundvick

Lizette B. Sundvick is one of the longest practicing female attorneys in Las Vegas, Nevada. She has been a member of WealthCounsel, LLC since 2002 and has received training from various legal and coaching organizations, such as WealthCounsel, LLC, the Nevada WealthCounsel Forum (Founding President – 2009-2012), National Network of Estate Planning Attorneys,...


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Wonderful to Work With

“Lizette and the staff are wonderful to work with and always give us excellent, on target advice. The sense of protection and confidence we have with the Sundvick Legacy Center allows us to relax and enjoy life.”
- Shirley & Terry L.

Professional, but Caring

“I appreciate Lizette's professional, but caring support through my Mom's last years and passing and also the help with my own trust. My experience with Sundvick Legacy services was very positive in every aspect.”
- Judy A.