Managing Your Ag Legacy

As the third largest Ag lender in the nation, Bank of the Westi has been dedicated to helping farmers and Agribusiness owners achieve their financial goals since 1874. We understand the unique challenges you face as a farmer. Our Ag dedicated Wealth Management Group is committed to helping you navigate those challenges as you build an Ag Legacy for future generations!

It Starts with a Plan

The planning process is complex but doesn’t have to be overwhelming…..with the right partner.

  • Your estate plan, succession plan and retirement plan are all connected, with the decisions made in one plan impacting the others.
  • As an Agribusiness owner you will have additional considerations around risk, tax management, and cash flow to contemplate.
  • We can help you build a team or integrate with your existing partners to ensure you have a cohesive plan that fulfills the needs of your farm and your family.

Estate Planning

Estate planning is about more than just whether or not you have a trust.

Typical considerations in the estate planning process include avoiding probate, reducing tax liabilities, distributing wealth, dealing with a disabled dependent, and planning for long-term care. Farmers and Ag owners have additional factors to take into consideration such as:

  • Equal is not always fair. You may have some children that were involved in growing the business and increasing the size of the estate while others were not. How do you divide up the estate while rewarding the children that helped grow the business?

  • Land rich and cash poor. Will the next generation be able to pay estate taxes without having to sell farm assets?

These additional considerations highlight the need to choose a partner with a background in helping Agribusiness and farming clients.

Business Succession

Over 70% of farming operations will not successfully pass on to the next generation.ii

When transitioning the farm or agribusiness you have three options:

  1. Sell the business to an outsider
  2. Sell to a business partner or employees
  3. Pass it on to a family member

The majority of our farming and Ag clients are looking to turn the business over to the next generation in order to further their Ag legacy. We understand that this decision is one of the largest decisions that you will ever make, and are here to help you through every step of the decision making process.

Tapping the Farm for Retirement

Maybe it’s time to reconsider your notion of retirement.

On the topic of retirement, many farmers state, “I don’t ever want to retire”, but when we dive deeper we find that the spouse may feel differently. Retiring doesn’t have to mean selling the farm and moving to a tropical island.

A few of the options we can discuss include:

  • Outsourcing all or part of your day to day operation and management
  • Passing the farm along to your children while generating retirement income
  • Tax deferred retirement plans that can supplement income and provide asset diversification

While many of these decisions will be made close to retirement, it is never too early to begin retirement planning.

Let’s Get Started

Our Ag dedicated Wealth Management Group can help partner with a team of internal and external experts to customize a plan that will minimizing tax liabilities while maximizing your legacy.


i2015 FDIC as of Q1 2015

iiAg Web, “A Successful Transition to the Next Generation,” Kevin Spafford, Farm Journal Columnist, June 30, 2012

Bank of the West Wealth Management offers products and services through Bank of the West and its various affiliates and subsidiaries.

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