Home Indiana Agriculture News Estate and Succession Planning Not Just About Taxes for Family Farms

Estate and Succession Planning Not Just About Taxes for Family Farms


The countdown is now at 14 days for the Indiana Farm Equipment and Technology Expo. Seminars and demonstrations will take place throughout the expo. One of those seminars will focus on estate and succession planning. Tanner Coulter, a financial advisor with Prudential, will conduct the seminar. He says it’s about more than just taxes.

“A lot of farmers still think that since there’s no Indiana estate tax and the federal estate tax is so high nowadays, that they don’t need it because there’s not going to be an estate tax there unless you’re a pretty good size grain farmer. But taxes are just one portion of that planning.”

He told me that there’s much more planning that must take place for family farms than just an individual with a 401k where that money can be evenly distributed amongst children.

“If one sibling that’s in the farm gets $1 million of farmland, is it fair to give the other sibling that’s 1,000 miles away $1 million in an investment account? As we know, it would be a lot easier to have the million dollars to invest rather than the million dollars of farmland because there’s a lot more work and a lot harder to get that income.”

And if there is no plan?

“Unfortunately, it gets sold off at an auction or a lot of times you’ll see a sibling the buying back the land for a second time. The parents already bought this land over the years and now they have to buy it back from the sale just to equalize that estate. Or they have to buy it just to keep it keep going. It all comes down to an auction in the end if there’s no plan in place.”

Coulter and his colleague, Fran Jacoby, will present at 2pm Wednesday at the Indiana Farm Equipment and Technology Expo in the West Pavilion of the Indiana State Fairgrounds.

The always popular seminar with Purdue ag economist Dr. Chris Hurt will take place at 11:30 that day where he will look ahead to 2019’s market and economic outlook. Be on the lookout for the full lineup of events to be announced soon. You can save yourself some time at the door and preregister now at indianafarmexpo.com.