This spring, while you conduct land preparation and planting, something you may want to think about is the future of your farm and your property after you are gone. While some think such an exercise is grim, most farmers would like their families to at least have the option to continue their farm operation. Failing to think about this issue can result in disaster, but with some thought and consultation, in many cases, the issue can be dealt with through 3 documents.
These documents are the following:
a. Last Will & Testament–this document sets out your wishes and instructions for the disposition of your property and assets after you die.
b. Living Will/Advanced Directive for Healthcare–this document states your wishes in the event of a terminal illness or incapacity regarding medical treatment and end-of-life preservation.
c. Power of Attorney–this document gives another person the power to transact your business in the event of your incapacity without the necessity of seeking a conservatorship through a Court.
A fourth potential document you may want is a Revocable Trust. This document conveys property into a Trust during your lifetime, but allows you control until your death. At that point the ability to revoke the Trust ceases. Use of a Revocable Trust may prevent the necessity of the probate of your estate entirely.
If you would like to speak with me about an estate plan and the passing on of your farm to the next generation, please do not hesitate to contact me.