As farm land prices increase and equipment, buildings, and other assets are added, farm valuations can often exceed the federal estate tax exemption, making estate planning crucial for preserving one’s farming legacy.
There are two things you need for your farming operation, says Ed Gillentine: an estate plan and a knowledgeable, trusted tax professional. Otherwise, he says, the consequences to you and your heirs could be unnecessarily costly.
“I’ve worked with hundreds of estates, and I’ve never seen an estate that worked out well without some type of plan,” he said at the annual meeting of the Mississippi Land Bank. “Given the outlook for further growth in land prices in the coming years, and the increasing value of your equipment, buildings, and other assets, I can promise you: if you don’t have a plan, you’re going to get hosed.”
Gillentine, a Certified Financial Planner and Chartered Financial Consultant with the Memphis firm, Williams & Gillentine Legacy Planning LLC, specializes in large estate transfers and philanthropic strategies, focusing on research, planning, and wealth management for families in the highest tax brackets.
“You may not think you have an estate large enough to worry about,” he says, “but with today’s land prices and the value of equipment, storage bins, and other assets, it quickly adds up.”