Farming family discusses two-year succession planning process

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Farming family discusses two-year succession planning process

A farming family in southern Indiana recently completed a two-year succession planning process.

Brothers Mark and Wayne Seib provide senior management of the farm which now includes Wayne’s two sons, Carl and Matthew.

“My nephews wanted to come back to the farm, but we just didn’t know how to make everything work or make sure the legalities were respected and satisfied,” he says. “I had goals, Wayne had goals, they had goals, and we basically hired a man to be a referee.”

Mark tells Brownfield that this was a thorough process of reviewing life insurance, wills and the goals of the operation. He says it has been very beneficial to have the help of a third party to guide them through the planning.

“We found issues to resolve that we weren’t aware of. We took care of it and implemented our succession plan on January 1stst of this year. It took us almost two years to make partnership agreements and try to sort it out, ”he says. “We separated the land from the farm to give ourselves better liability coverage and this also served some of my goals of keeping the land so that I could pass it on to my daughters, who work outside. the farm, and give them some value in the land and the farm that I have been so involved in.

The advice he has for other farmers who are considering handing over the farm to the next generation is to find an advisor they trust.

“Make sure you have a good working relationship with them and make sure they get along with it and don’t ask for all of your financial documents in the very first meeting,” he says. “Make sure it’s a good relationship and then give them all you’ve got because if you’re hiding something it puts them behind the eight ball trying to give you a true picture of what you need to do.” to establish the succession plan. work to the best of their ability.

Seib Farms, which dates back to 1898, was part of this year’s Purdue University Farm Management Tour.

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