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Passing on More Than Tradition

Posted October 17, 2012 in Advice Column, Winterset

According to the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA), the most recent Census of Agriculture report reveals that age 57 is the average age of principal farm operators. Over the next decade, this group of farm operators will face the prospect of passing on the family farm to a new crop of American farmers.

Deciding how to pass on the family farm can be a sensitive topic. After all, a family business is not handed down through the generations as easily as heirlooms and traditions. A successful family business transfer takes careful planning and teamwork to develop a transition strategy for the business you’ve worked decades to build.

If you’re like most of us, you want to be the one making the key decisions when it’s time to transfer your farm or other business operations. That’s why it’s wise to be prepared — with a plan in place — when the time is right.

Ask yourself these questions to help determine if you’re ready to take the next step in succession planning.

Would you like to…
•    Keep your family farm or business in the family for the next generation?
•    Distribute business assets to your children or grandchildren who are active in the family farm or business, while maintaining fairness to your other children or grandchildren?
•    Make sure your business heir has the right to buy your family farm and business assets?
•    Provide enough cash to pay off mortgages, personal or business debts and estate taxes?

If you answered yes to any of these questions, it may be time to get started in the business transition process. We can help you build a relationship with your estate planning team-attorney, accountant, banker and assist in creating comprehensive estate and business succession strategies. Call your Farm Bureau agent today.

Tips brought to you by Farm Bureau Financial Services. For more information about products and services, call Scot Clark at (515) 462-4774.

Securities & services offered through FBL Marketing Services, LLC+, 5400 University Ave., West Des Moines, IA 50266, 877/860-2904, Member SIPC. Farm Bureau Property & Casualty Insurance Company+*, Western Agricultural Insurance Company+*, Farm Bureau Life Insurance Company+*/West Des Moines, IA +Affiliates * Company providers of Farm Bureau Financial Services.

Information provided by Scot Clark, Farm Bureau Financial Services, 115 W. Court, Winterset, 462-4774,

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