A Guide to Succession: Sustaining families and farms

A Guide to Succession Sustaining families and farms

Succession planning is often a complex issue for farm businesses. This booklet is a sound, factual guide that will provide an important starting point for many families. The inclusion of various professionals’ perspectives provides some wonderful ideas on the succession planning process, with each providing a slightly different take on the subject. 

Family situations are unique and the case studies included in this booklet provide interesting examples of real life outcomes and it is motivating to see some of the innovative ideas developed.

The picture of the family unit, in the form of a genogram included with each case study, gives a clear understanding of each family structure. In addition, the breakdown of the business assets and liabilities are vital to understanding the type of operation in question and give solidity to the outcomes. They also enable the reader to have a view of the size and complexity of the final agreement. Inclusion of the reasons leading up to the family meeting for each of the case studies also give the reader the opportunity to better identify with the situation. 

The booklet also contains checklists as useful and practical tools for identifying important factors to consider when embarking on a succession planning process. In addition, the information provided on a number of financial planning tools will enable people to ask their adviser about the suitability of each to their particular circumstances. 

The key messages in the booklet are: the need to plan; the need for expert assistance; and the importance of keeping the family and business intact. 

Developing a succession plan that meets the expectations of all involved is not easy and this booklet is a good starting point for people looking to broach the subject of succession planning.

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Grains Research and Development Corporation