VanNess & VanNess, P.A.

Entrepreneurs need to update their estate plans

Busy entrepreneurs in Florida often have to juggle multiple responsibilities. Unfortunately, important personal finance concerns can sometimes take a back seat to immediate business issues. As a result, some entrepreneurs have estate plans that are out of date and may not address their current circumstances.

The reality is that nobody knows with any certainty when an estate plan will become necessary. That's why it's important for entrepreneurs and everyone else to regularly review and update their estate plans.

Many, though not all, entrepreneurs are relatively young when they begin their businesses. Many people undergo life changes when they are in their 20s and 30s as they may marry, have kids, buy homes or even divorce. An old will that does not take into consideration the entrepreneur's family situation or the fact that he or she owns real estate can wreak havoc for family members if the entrepreneur dies suddenly without making necessary changes.

Entrepreneurs also may have special needs, such as the development of a succession plan for their businesses in case they die or become incapacitated. This may require specialized estate planning and regular review as the business grows and develops.

Entrepreneurs who don't have an estate plan, or who are concerned about the one they already have, may benefit from speaking with an experienced estate attorney. The lawyer may be able to review the client's circumstances and make recommendations regarding wills, insurance and end-of-life documents, such as a living will or power of attorney. An attorney also may be able to assist someone with developing a plan for what happens to a client's business if and when he or she is unable to run it anymore.

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