The Meaning of Farm Continuation Planning by Attorney Shayna W. Borakove, BORAKOVE | OSMAN LLC. “Attorney Borakove speaks about her personal experience with her own family’s farm and how continuation is the goal of succession.”

Based on my own farm family, and having experienced the successful continuation of our family farm following the death of my grandfather this year, I have developed a Multi-Phased Meeting-Centered Farm Continuation Process, unique and specific to our firm, BORAKOVE OSMAN LLC. Together with Attorney Peter C. Osman, BORAKOVE | OSMAN ‘s Elder Planning Practice Leader, we cater to the varied business, estate planning, and elder planning needs of farming familes to provide the proper level of planning, without the loss of control or the use of often unneccessary trusts. Advisors helping farm clients would be well-served to have an estate-business-farm planning attorney who is a fellow farm girl, a true team player, and who is backed by a qualified and skilled elder planning attorney, Peter C. Osman.

That said, Planning for the succession and ultimate continuation of a family farm requires more than just estate planning. Furthermore, estate planning for farmers is different! By “more“, I do not mean more complex, more complicated, or more money, which some in my profession, unfortunately, would have you believe. By “more“, I mean more counseling, more actual knowledge of the farming business, more knowledge about family farm values, farm principles, farm culture, and above all, the family dynamics.

By “different“, I do not mean unconventional, untested, or rare. By “different” I mean specific, and customized. Estate planning for farm families is not just estate planning. When seeking out an attorney to plan for the succession of the family farm, continuation and preservation of the farm should be the #1 goal of the attorney. The attorney must respect the farm business, and understand the business and family dynamics of farming. Obviously, it helps to have an attorney who limits their practice to estate, business and farm planning, and who has a farm background.

As for me, I happen to be a proud member of a farming family. I am both fortunate and unfortunate to have watched the family farm successfully continue to the surviving business owner and the next generation, my father, following the death of my grandfather this June. The successful continuation resulted from smart planning, careful consideration of family cracks and breaking points, and above all COMMUNICATION and FOLLOW THROUGH. Successful farm continuation requires the written realization of a farmer’s desired legacy. I happen to speak fluent farmer, and therefore, pride myself as being South Central Wisconsin’s Scrivener for Farmers.

If you look below, you will find an old picture taken by my mother that shows my grandfather watching my father work — something my grandad was quite good at (which I say with a very fond and loving heart). Now, upon reflection and from the experience I have gained from helping my own family and other Wisconsin farm families, I realize that my grandfather was not just watching my dad work, he was proudly witnessing the continuation of his legacy. Trusted advisors and professionals helping farming families, who want their farm clients to have the advice and counsel of one of their own, would be well-served directing their farm clients to me, an Estate, Business and Farm Planning Attorney at BORAKOVE | OSMAN LLC, shayna@borakoveosman.com, 608-828-4880, proudly serving farm clients and conducting kitchen table consultations throughout Southcentral Wisconsin.

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