Succession Planning: It’s Your Retirement Plan

You’ve built a sound and successful business – everything is running smoothly. But what are your plans for the future? When do you get to retire? What happens to the business when you’re no longer at the helm? Having a sound business succession plan in place will help reassure not only you, but also your employees, clients, and family and to you.
In a November 2012 report, the Canadian Federation of Independent Business found that 51 percent of small and medium-sized enterprises don’t have a plan in place. If you’re one of them, now’s the time to get familiar with succession planning – what’s involved, when to do it, and where to turn for help.
It’s Complex.
The technical aspects of succession planning – selecting and training successors, determining the value of a business, tax considerations, estate freezes, family trusts, redemption agreements, wealth management – can be complicated. They can also take a lot of time. When you’re running a business, you may not have the time it takes to handle these details on your own. A qualified advisor can bring together a team of specialists – accountants, tax consultants, human resource experts, and legal advisors. With an overview of your finances and an understanding of your goals, the advisor will work with these specialists to help you develop and maintain a succession plan that addresses all the technicalities.
It’s Never Too Early
Even if retirement is years away, it’s never too soon to create a succession plan. Early planning gives you more opportunity to explore a broader range of transition options and choose the right successor. Consider the benefits of critical illness and life insurance. Critical illness insurance can protect your company’s assets during difficult times, giving you more resources and choices. Life insurance can provide the money needed to complete a buy–sell agreement or hire a replacement.
It’s Important
Succession planning helps protect your business. It encourages financial security and allows you to deal with unexpected events and prepare for the future. Ultimately, it offers peace of mind.
Domenico Colussi* is a Sun Life Financial advisor who can be reached by phone at 905-294-4030 ext. 2345 or by email at domenico.colussi@sunlife.com. For more information on Domenico, visit www.sunlife.ca/domenico.colussi.
*Mutual Funds offered by Sun Life Financial Investment Services (Canada) Inc. Sun Life Assurance Company of Canada is a member of the Sun Life Financial group of companies. © Sun Life Assurance Company of Canada, 2015.

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