Do you work with a trusted estate or tax attorney? Have you found a CPA who speaks your language? Does your insurance agent really give you ‘peace of mind’? Many small business owners have voiced some frustration in finding and working with professional advisors. Trust is not always high and there is often a disconnect in the language spoken by advisors – whether it is the use of ‘legalese’ or financial jargon that can be confusing at best.
However, these professional advisors can provide very necessary and important services. For example, an experienced estate-planning attorney can provide family business owners with a range of important options for transferring their estate, including their business, to the next generation while minimizing their tax implications. They can educate you about the use of Trusts, Family LLCs and other vehicles that may well meet your needs. But, in order to do so, these advisors need to be knowledgeable about issues that the family will face and the issues that will impact the business. Often a professional advisor will be knowledgeable about one but not the other.
As you begin to explore potential relationships with advisors, remember to consider the following: