It may be possible for an Ohio business to survive after the original or current owner decides to leave it behind. However, business owners need to have a plan in place to make sure that happens. Ideally, an owner has at least a will as part of an estate plan. This may give that person control over where assets go after he or she passes on.

Without a will or other estate plan documents, state law will decide who receives the decedent’s property. In some cases, the person who receives it may not want it or be able to make use of it. When assets do pass, an estate plan may reduce the amount of tax paid on that transfer. This may be true at both the state and federal level. In 2018, the personal federal estate tax exemption is slightly more than $11 million.

It is important to note that the rate could go back down to $5 million after 2025, and that number is indexed for inflation. Regardless of why a person decides to create an estate plan, it should be reviewed on a regular basis. This ensures that the documents reflect a person’s wishes and that they are valid under state law. For business owners, this may make it easier for their companies to thrive after they are gone.

Those who own a business may benefit from a variety of estate planning documents. Creating a will makes it easier to gain control over where assets go after a person dies. A trust may help assets such as a business pass to a new owner without going through probate. An attorney may be helpful in creating estate plan documents or helping a client review those documents on a regular basis.