Business succession planning can help you pass down a business and protect your heirs’ best interests to ensure you don’t lose any of your most prized assets.

You put a lot of work into building your business, but what will happen to it after you die? That all depends on how you set up your estate. Good estate planning will preserve your assets and Las Vegas business when you die and transfer everything to your chosen beneficiaries. Here are some options for protecting your business and the consequences if you don’t make the proper arrangements.

How Can You Protect Your Las Vegas Business And Beneficiaries?

The best way to protect your business and beneficiaries after your death is to work with an estate attorney to include plans for your business in your will. But what kind of arrangements should you make? Your attorney can help you decide on a strategy that fits your exact circumstances and desires. But here are a few routes Las Vegas business owners can consider:

  • Create a living trust that transfers ownership of your business to a trusted successor. This option keeps your business out of probate and minimizes your estate’s tax burden. 
  • Form a partnership with the person you want to take over your business. Make your desired successor a partner and make a buy-sell agreement that lists events (such as your death) that would trigger a sale of your shares to your partner.  
  • If you have a small business, you might be able to pass on your business to a trusted successor and avoid a tax penalty by simply gifting it to them. However, gifting must happen when you are still alive and ready to hand the business over. 


What Happens To Your Las Vegas Business When You Die Without A Will?

So what happens to your Las Vegas business if you die without a will? That depends on your business structure. Without specifying what happens to your business after death may open your family to civil litigation, but in general here is what could happen:

  • If you own a sole proprietorship, your business will end with your passing, and all assets will go towards satisfying debts. Then your next of kin receive leftover assets.
  • For an LLC, your operating agreement should include what happens to the business after your passing, such as who will take over for you. If there is no will, your business shares usually pass to your next of kin.  
  • Ideally, in partnerships, you already have a signed agreement for what happens to the business if a partner dies. But if a partner passes without such an agreement, intestacy law gives that partner’s business shares to their next of kin.
  • Corporations usually have several shareholders to keep a business running if an individual passes away. However, if you are the only shareholder and die without a will, your estate becomes the “owner,” and stocks will be distributed according to intestacy laws. 

In the absence of a will, your loved ones will have to navigate the often confusing probate process. Part of that means settling any business debts. If the debts exceed your assets, this can create a heavy burden for grieving loved ones. Then how your family uses your assets to pay off debts can also cause contention with your business partners and destroy what’s left of the business. Speaking to an estate planning attorney as soon as your business becomes profitable can prevent these problems.

Talk To Williams Starbuck About Las Vegas Business Estate Planning

If you’re a Las Vegas business owner who hasn’t started estate planning, take your first steps today by calling the estate attorneys at Williams Starbuck. Call us at 1-720-660-9847 or send us a message for a free consultation.

Business Succession Planning In Las Vegas

Creating a successful small business involves a great deal of time, effort, and financial resources.  Succession planning is the process of turning over the leadership of a small business, in the event of an owner’s sickness or death. Proper business succession planning can allow small business owners to protect their business’ legacy and familial assets.  The attorneys at Williams Starbuck have over 25 years of experience advising Las Vegas, Nevada when it comes to business succession planning.


Why Business Succession Planning Is Important

Small businesses are the lifeline of our economy and provide approximately 47 % of available private-sector jobs.  Approximately 85% of small businesses report not being prepared for business succession in the event of an owner’s sickness, divorce, or death. 

Furthermore, after the COVID-19 pandemic, many small business owners were forced to close down their small businesses or drastically reduce their operations.  This has remarkably changed the landscape of our local Las Vegas small business ownership.  The attorneys at Williams Starbuck stand ready to help you create the best business succession plan for your small business.  Our area of expertise covers a wide range of matters and includes:

  • Choice of Entity Analysis
  • Corporate, Partnership and Limited Liability Company Formation
  • Operating Agreements
  • Buy/Sell Agreements
  • Employee Purchase/Bonus Agreement
  • Business Reorganizations
  • Stock Purchase Agreements
  • Dissolutions
  • Business Succession Planning
  • Drafting and Reviewing Contracts
  • Business Litigation

Let Williams Starbuck Help You With Business Succession Planning

The distinction in working with the attorneys at Williams Starbuck is that our team has both the courtroom and business experience needed to handle all of the aspects of your business succession planning, including those considerations that are unique to medical and financial professionals. Regardless of your industry, trade, or profession, we will take careful foresight in understanding your business’ interests and you will be fully protected.

If you have questions on any topic from starting a business to selling one in Las Vegas, Williams Starbuck are experienced attorneys and can help with various types of business succession planning.  We have experience working with clients who are new to starting a business to those who are acquiring an existing one.  Call us at 1-720-660-9847 or send us a message for a free consultation.