Farm Table says:
The aims of this publication are to increase understanding and to stimulate communication about succession planning between family members and also with their advisers.
The authors note that succession planning is like any other plan: the earlier you start the more options you will have. They recommend starting when the new generation is entering the business, rather when someone is leaving the business.
They recommend working with experts in each area of succession planning to work through the maze of implications including CGT, stamp duty, and GST.
The guide includes guiding principles from a range of advisors:
- agricultural consultant
- lawyer acting in the interests of the asset holder
- lawyer from the perspective of the farming family
- financial planner
- generation consultant
There are also a number of case studies. Studies include:
- unhappy daughter-in-law
- father feeling over-committed
- generational conflict
- parents ready to retire and move
- discomfort about debt
- drought and wanting to sell
- poor family history
- parents to retire
- concern over father’s new wife
- poor health
- different ideas about management
- decision to leave farming
- including young family members
- concern about profitability
- parents need a hand
- a sad story
There is also tips and checklists to help you start thinking about the succession planning process.
The final thought given by the author is “It is important to understand that when a family is given an opportunity to express their hopes and concerns they do so. The potential is that a can of worms may be opened. The meeting opportunity is a can opener, it does not create the worms.”