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Part of the probate process may involve the transference of control over a business. One way to clarify your final wishes for your company is to create a business succession plan with the help of an experienced attorney. These plans can ensure the dissolution, transfer, or division of your busines, depending on what you see fit. Additionally, a valid business succession plan will override any state intestacy laws and could help to avoid probate altogether. If you are wondering how probate affects business succession in Cary, reach out to our law firm for more information. Our lawyers can help to craft business succession plans that minimize the impact of probate and secure your goals for the future.
If a person dies without a Will or other form of estate plan, North Carolina General Statutes § 29-15 outlines a strict hierarchy of which heirs will receive what portion of property. In short, the law says that the spouse will receive a portion of a person’s personal property upon death and the remainder goes to the children. If there is no surviving spouse, all children receive an equal portion of the estate. Unfortunately, these intestacy laws could create challenges in keeping a company under stable ownership. If a surviving spouse has no interest in the company, or if they want to take total control after a death, there could be lengthy legal battles between family members. Business owners can work to avoid this outcome by creating a plan for succession with an experienced local attorney.
The purpose of probate is to ensure that an estate is properly distributed. This includes verifying the authenticity of any estate planning documents and ensuring that the estate administrators fulfill their duties. If a person dies without an estate plan, probate courts may need to apply the state’s intestacy laws to distribute their property. Fortunately, a valid business succession plan can help to avoid the complexities of probate by establishing a decedent’s wishes. It can be helpful to think of a business succession plan like a Will. These plans can provide explicit instructions to the court as to what a person wants to happen to their business interests when they die.
Once a court authenticates this document, it must oversee the execution of these wishes. This could involve the following actions:
An attorney at our Cary office can help to draft business succession plans that override the state’s intestacy laws and limit the impact of probate.
Probate has a reputation of being costly and lengthy. Fortunately, enacting a business succession plan can help to ease this process and ensure that your wishes are respected. A well-drafted plan can limit the impact of probate and ensure that your desires for your company come to fruition. Contact a knowledgeable lawyer at our firm to learn more about how probate affects business succession in Cary.