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    Estate Planning Accountant

    The days are long, but the years are short.

    While this sentiment is usually applied to raising children, it's also appropriate for growing a business. That's because they are two things that have much in common.

    estate-planning-accountant-wcpa

    You dedicate your time to nurturing your baby or your nascent business idea, growing it from a tiny, helpless infant or exciting concept into a self-sufficient adult or flourishing company in which you feel a lot of pride.

    Family and business are both part of your legacy.

    We understand how much heart goes into building, running, sustaining, and growing a closely-held business. We are business owners ourselves. We know the pride of nurturing a company into something successful and thriving. While few things can compare to the feeling of raising children, growing your own business certainly comes close.

    When the time comes to leave your business to the next generation, you want to be thoughtful about who comes in when you are gone. Of course you want control of the company to go to someone who will appreciate and care for it as you did. But you also want to leave a legacy, including your business and other assets, to those you care most about.

    Your estate can be a meaningful boon to your loved ones. The more of it that stays in their hands, rather than being eaten up by taxes, probate, and other fees, the more there is to help your family thrive based on what you've left for them. That's why estate planning is critical to every business and every family.

    An estate planning accountant can help you keep more of your assets in the hands of your loved ones. A skilled accountant can also simplify the process of transferring your wealth. In a time when your family is dealing with the weight of loss and the stress of a massive administrative burden, simplicity is a gift. BGW offers estate services because we understand that your business is part of your legacy, much like your family, and that both are best served by leaving a sound, thoughtful plan.

    What Is an Estate Plan?

    What Is an Estate Plan

    First, let's start with talking about what an estate is. You may own a charming countryside home that looks like the filming location for a British period drama. If you do, that regal estate is part of the kind of estate we are discussing. Your estate is simply everything you own: cars, furniture, your grandmother's antique spoon collection, your home, and even that expansive property set among rolling green hills, if you have one. Your business, or your equity in a business, is also part of your estate. All of this goes to someone upon your death.

    Your estate plan dictates what happens to your estate when you are gone. This plan includes your will, trusts, life insurance, and various powers of attorney. It may also include succession planning for your business or other elements that may come into play while you're still alive. Your estate plan codifies your intentions for transferring your estate to the next generation.

    Why Do You Need an Estate Plan?

    If you die intestate–that means with no will–your assets will go to someone, eventually. However, that someone may not be the person you would have chosen. That could mean your business is sold off so the proceeds can be split between your children, even if one of them would have loved to keep it in the family. Without your guidance, the court could force a sale. Your assets may also go to people you didn’t intend them to go to. For example, an estranged sibling may get to spend the rest of their years luxuriating at that country home we discussed because you didn't leave legal documents specifying a different plan.

    Even if the default distribution plan for your assets is roughly in line with what you'd have chosen, the court system will initiate probate when you die without a specific plan. Probate is a lengthy process used to determine who gets what. Not only does probate eat up time, but it also eats up money.

    Control of your business will be in limbo during the probate process, which could be disastrous to your company. Access to that country home may be cut off for everyone, meaning your grandchildren miss several summers frolicking on those rolling green hills. And your family won't have access to funds, even for things like planning your final arrangements. Unless you have an estate plan, everything might be frozen for months or years while a government bureaucracy decides who gets what.

    Your estate plan designates beneficiaries. In most cases, it allows your estate to skip probate. It makes sure that your assets are distributed in a timely way according to your wishes.

    If You Have a Will, Why Do You Need an Estate Planning Accountant?

    Do You Need an Estate Planning Accountant

    We discussed how an estate plan can help you avoid probate and appropriately distribute your assets. With the help of an estate planning CPA, it can do much more than that.

    A solid estate plan includes more than a will and is about more than just deciding who receives the coveted family dining table. A skilled accountant can help you assess your life insurance needs to ensure those you care about aren't left in a bad situation if you pass unexpectedly.

    Your accountant can explain how every element of your plan will affect your estate's tax picture. Would you and your loved ones benefit from a trust, and if so, how should it be structured? Would it be better to make some gifts now, and how do gift taxes come into play? Can you use payable-on-death accounts as a business continuity strategy or to cover your final arrangements? An accountant can answer those questions for you.

    A will is only one component of a comprehensive estate plan. Depending on the details of your finances, the best strategy may include any or all of the following:

    • Trusts
    • Life insurance
    • Gifts, with planning for gift tax compliance and optimization
    • Charitable giving strategies, including behests or donor-advised funds
    • Succession planning
    • Other strategies as deemed necessary

    Your will doesn't help you with those things. Your BGW estate planning accountant will.

    An accountant can help you project the future value of your estate so you are making appropriate plans for the time they are likely to be enacted. When you have significant assets, there is a meaningful difference between leaving behind an estate covered by a thorough, customized plan and leaving behind a simple will. That difference can be the difference between leaving a legacy that meaningfully transforms the lives of your loved ones or not.

    When you have people you care about, you want to help create a secure financial future for them. When you have a sizable estate, you want to make the most of it and see that it best serves those you love. The accounting team at BGW specializes in delivering customized, personal solutions based on your individual needs and estate. We won't sell you “package number 3” and cut and paste your name in the relevant spaces. We will get to know you and understand what you envision your legacy accomplishing. From there, we will develop an estate plan that secures that legacy and protects your wealth.

    Whether your legacy includes a closely-held business, a country manor, or possessions and funds you've spent a lifetime working for, we can help. The days are long and the years short. Don't delay working with an estate planning accountant in Charlotte, NC to secure the future of your estate and the continuation of your legacy.

    Solutions

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    M&A / Transaction

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    Quality of Earnings

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    Succession Planning

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    Compensation Structure

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    Estate Planning

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    Business Valuations

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    Cash Flow Optimization

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    Cost Segregation Studies

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    Our Proven Process

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    We deliver value through our proven process. We differenciate ourselves by listening to you, & helping you acheive your vision

    The reason we do what we do For our amazing clients

    Our people are the nucleous

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    Our people are the nucleous

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