4 Steps to Recruit the Right Help for Your Ohio Farm’s Estate Planning
September 18th, 2014
You want to protect your Ohio farm’s estate and success for future generations. Here are four simple steps to help you recruit excellent assistance.
Step 1. Delegate Estate Planning to the Right Planner
You need trustworthy people to help you with all aspects of your agribusiness, from simple tasks like watering plants and treating sick animals to more complex, cerebral challenges, like budgeting and seasonal crop management.
Similarly, to manage your estate planning, find someone you can trust to draw up trusts and minimize tax consequences for the estate. Look for a planner who has experience and knowledge specifically about the Ohio farm community. Ohio estate planning law -- especially as it pertains to agribusinesses -- is loaded with subtleties that present obstacles as well as opportunities.
Step 2. Cast a Wide Net
To find the right attorney, examine many choices. Use diverse channels, including personal referrals and the Internet, to generate prospective firms to call. Naturally, you don’t have the time to speak with every qualified attorney, so you’ll need to trim your list. How should you do this?
- Look for consistently favorable reviews, comments or referrals;
- Examine the prospective attorneys' credentials and special achievements (if any);
- Determine whether the candidates have experience working on agricultural estates.
Select the three most promising attorneys, and book a free consultation with each one.
Step 3. Make the Best Use of Your Free Consultations
Come prepared to your consultations with lots of questions, and write down the answers you receive. Here are some questions to ask (include questions specific to your needs/concerns, too):
- Tell me about your interest, background and experience in estate planning for farmers.
- What steps will you follow in designing my estate plan?
- What will you charge to create the plan?
- Who is responsible for assuring that plan instructions are followed?
- What will happen to any future assets that the farm acquires?
- How will we keep the plan current and updated?
- What are your administration fees for handling the estate?
Step 4. Select Your Planner
Based on the answers you get during your consultations, choose the planner that seems like the best match. If you have trouble deciding, try this cool trick. Write each choice on a piece of paper and stick the papers to the fridge with a magnet. Then take a break -- don’t think about your choices. Take your mind off the subject by going to a movie, watching TV, reading a book, taking care of your animals, etc. Then, the next time you're in the kitchen, immediately (without thinking) grab the piece of paper off the fridge that corresponds to your intuitive choice.
Use your intuition as well as your critical thinking skills to choose your planner.
Please consider adding Gudorf Law Group to your list of candidates. We work with Ohio farmers. Call 877-483-6730 now to schedule your free 60-minute consultation with our team.