Buy Sell Plans

Are You Risking Your Business?

Businesses are bold, innovative, dynamic, and forward moving. They reflect the entrepreneurial spirit of their founders. They reflect the value found in taking calculated risks in exchange for achieving dreams and fulfillment. Would it surprise you to know that you may be your company's single greatest risk? If you haven't established or updated your buy-sell agreement, you are taking a risk with the value of your business every day.

The risk comes into play in the event you, as the business owner and primary driver, suffer a disabling injury, illness, or premature death. In the absence of a well-drafted and insured buy-sell agreement, your business may have to be sold at a fraction of its value at a time when you or your heirs need its fair market value the most.

What Does a Buy-Sell Agreement Do?

An insured and properly funded buy-sell agreement accomplishes these things for you, your heirs, and your colleagues:

  • Sets the value of your business interest for federal estate tax purposes;
  • Secures a guaranteed market (purchasers) for your business interest;
  • Assures your heirs of receiving the fair market value of your business interest;
  • Ensures a smooth transition of your business interest to the purchasers;
  • Grants continuity to your business operation for creditors and employees alike.

The executed buy-sell agreement establishes the how, how much, and when a business ownership interest transfers. It legally binds the parties to the execution of the agreement provisions. Life insurance and disability insurance provide the necessary funds to fulfill the agreement promptly, efficiently, and on a tax-preferable basis.

If you have not reviewed or updated your buy-sell agreement and the policies that fund your agreement, it's time. Markets have changed, business values have changed, and insurance company rates have changed.

Top Mistakes We See in Buy-Sell...

Don't be caught with these common errors:

  • Failure to execute a properly drafted buy-sell agreement;
  •  Using the wrong buy-sell agreement for your business structure;
  • Failure to fund the buy-sell agreement with insurance;
  • Failure to include disability buy-out provisions and appropriate insurance funding;
  • Failure to keep the current business value up to date in the agreement and policy funding amounts;
  • Failure to modify the valuation formula when business directions change;
  • Failure to consider waiver of premium benefits on the insurance contracts;
  • Failure to name the correct owner, premium payor, and beneficiary(s) in the insurance policy contracts consistent with the language of the agreement.

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