Talking about estate planning is difficult and implementing an estate plan can be even harder. Questions often include: Who needs to be involved? What information do I need to gather? When is it the right time to start? Where do I start? How do I decide what to do?
“Farmers are unique in that there isn’t a distinct moment where they just walk out the door to retirement as someone in a regular wage earning job might do,” says Ann Johanns, an Iowa State University Extension program specialist who works in the farm management area. “Rather, farm families often need to think about how to transition the farm business to the next generation during a lifetime, as well as having an estate plan in place.”
Farm families need an estate plan, help to transfer assets
There are options you can consider such as phasing out or transitioning to another generation. The “Evaluating Your Estate Plan” program offered by ISU Extension can help in the planning process. This workshop answers estate planning questions and helps prepare for future farm transitions and estate planning. Past participant comments include:
* “Lots of food for thought. Very valuable resources, excellent presentations; met my expectations.”
* “Great job, a lot of good info, the speakers were very knowledgeable and professional.”
* “Well done-worth the time and cost.”
Are you unsure about transitioning to the next generation?
Presenters for the workshop are Melissa O’Rourke and Kelvin Leibold, Iowa State University Extension farm and business management specialists. O’Rourke is an attorney experienced in agricultural law and estate planning. Leibold joined ISU Extension in 1987 and has vast experience in working with agricultural clients in farm and business planning.
The one-day workshop will cover the language of estate planning, gift, estate and inheritance taxes, calculating retirement costs, and many other areas vital to creating a good estate plan. The workshops help those who are confused about building a plan for transferring farm assets or unsure what options are best for their farm operation and family.
ISU Extension is offering the workshop at seven locations in June. Registration at each site starts at 9 a.m. Workshops will adjourn at 4 p.m. Advance registration is required as space is limited. The “Evaluating Your Estate Plan” workshop costs $50 per person and includes workshop materials and lunch. To register, call the county Extension office listed with the sites above. For more information, visit the Ag Decision Maker website.
For farm management information and analysis, go to ISU's Ag Decision Maker site www.extension.iastate.edu/agdm and ISU Extension farm management specialist Steve Johnson's www.extension.iastate.edu/polk/farmmanagement.htm.