Why every entrepreneur needs a succession plan
By Brad Severin, Moodys Private Client Accounting
It was raining the day that Jim passed away from a sudden heart attack. He was out for his morning run and he never came back. His son Brett called from the office of the family’s construction company when Dad failed to arrive for a meeting with their tax advisor and lawyer and was given the awful news. Dad was gone. Now what? He knew everything – the history of the company, who the most important suppliers and contractors were, the arrangements with the bankers through his personal relationships with them for over thirty years. All this knowledge died with him.
What was Brett going to do? He had left his teaching position to work with his father in hopes of taking over the company one day, but there was no clear path at the time of his death. Their “right hand man” was nearing retirement and together with his father, drove the company forward. Brett knew that Dad’s will left everything to his mother, including the shares of the company, but how would they be able to continue forward without him. Now what?
Unfortunately, this story plays itself out far too often with the ultimate result frequently being the dissolution or failure of the business to succeed to the next generation as intended. All for the lack of a comprehensive plan to deal with issues around death, succession, and financial risk management during the lifetime of the patriarch. As the adage goes – “Fail to plan and you plan to fail”.
When the pieces of the puzzle fit together to provide for a smooth transition, all of the objectives established by the founding generation of the business are met and the longterm financial health of the family will be preserved. That is where we can help. At Moodys we recognise the importance of a well-crafted and skilfully executed succession plan to help you and your family chart a path for your business to be successful today, tomorrow, and beyond.
Brad SeverinGGI member firm
Moodys Private Client Accounting
Fiduciary & Estate Planning, Law Firm Services, Tax
Calgary, Edmonton, Canada
T: +1 780 784 2500
Moodys Private Client Accounting has one focus – tax. They provide tax advice and planning for individuals with personal and business interests on both sides of the Canada-US border, no matter where they live in the world.
Brad Severin was once described as an “eminent tax accountant” by former federal Finance Minister and Prime Minister Paul Martin. That’s high praise indeed. With more than 25 years of experience as a tax professional, he specialises in consulting in the areas of Canadian and international taxation matters, including corporate reorganisations, mergers and acquisitions, and succession planning for family-owned businesses.
Published: Trust & Estate Planning Newsletter, No. 08, Autumn 2021 l Photo: Anthony - stock.adobe.com