Clients are often unsure of why they need to consider business succession and estate planning matters pertaining to their business. The analogy we often use is, why spend all of your life working hard to save and build up your assets, only to leave them completely unprotected and at the mercy of third parties or creditors in the event that something unfortunate happens to you or your business.
Each individual circumstance requires considered legal advice, and the options suggested for you will vary depending on your existing business set up, assets/liabilities, future goals and wealth creation strategy.
Generally, owning assets through a trust structure affords a high level of protection. Our Gold Coast Lawyers can discuss various trust structures with you, including discretionary trusts, unit trusts and hybrid trusts, the documents necessary to establish a trust and a host of other (if any) requirements. This will assist with ensuring that your trust is structured properly and that you understand the rights and obligations that go with it.
You should also consider the future of your business and consider what you wish to happen to it, if something should happen to you. It may be of assistance if your plan covers such things as:
– Who is authorised to make decisions for and on behalf of the business;
– How the ownership of the business is held (i.e. who owns what); and
– What obligations do the owners have to contribute time/money to the business?
Succession planning also considers what the process should be in the unfortunate event of the death or incapacitation of an owner, or an owners retirement from the business.
Affinity Lawyers have a team of experienced lawyers who can assist you in providing legal advice regarding asset protection, succession and estate planning issues, including establishing trust structures, drafting documents such as shareholder agreements, partnership agreements, or other types of agreements including co-ownership agreements or buy/sell or put/call option agreements.
There are various options available and we strongly recommend that you arrange a consultation with one of our lawyers to discuss your individual circumstances to ensure that you have maximum control over your assets, and that your estate and succession planning is reflective of your wishes.
In addition to the structure of your business, it is also important that you ensure that your Will is current and accurately reflects your wishes. Affinity Lawyers also has experienced and proficient lawyers who are able to assist you with all of your estate planning needs, including Wills, testamentary trusts, advice regarding family provision claims, power of attorneys, advanced health directives and more.
Please contact our Gold Coast office today on 5563 8970 to discuss your business needs.