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Adjust your estate planning as you enter each phase of life

Dear Michael: We have a good family farm operation. Our son works with us and owns quite a bit of land on his own – although we still own the central properties. He should be able to buy out his siblings share. We’ve also put quite a bit aside into the stock market over the years to go to ou…

January 20, 2016 4:00 pm(0)

With farm income dropping, planning is more important

Dear Michael: We haven’t done anything with our wills since the kids were young. We have two children – one farming with us and one who farms next door as she married the neighbor farming child. Our son just got married, but our married daughter has three children and been married for over 1…

January 07, 2016 4:00 pm(0)

Is Christmas holiday a good time to talk estate planning?

Dear Michael: We have been working on our estate plan for the past few months. We have a farming child, who is married, and we have three other children – all of whom are coming home for the holidays. Is this a good time to visit with our children about what we are thinking in our estate pla…

December 31, 2015 4:00 pm(0)

Every estate journey begins by taking the first step

Dear Michael: We have a time management issue. We know we should be updating our planning, but our year to year has changed so dramatically in the past decade. We’re now growing crops that we take off the field later. We’ve also purchased a home in Arizona where we like to go as soon as the …

December 10, 2015 4:00 pm(0)

Pleasing two heirs farming when one is new to operation

Dear Michael: We have a situation that may or may not be unique. We have four children and two of the boys farm. One started farming back when all we could do is help him build his own operation and the other started more recently and hasn’t acquired the assets the first son has.

November 26, 2015 3:00 pm(0)

Laying out a 10-year plan for succession of family farm

Dear Michael: We have just two children – a son who is not interested in farming at all and a daughter who married a neighbor boy. They’ve been married a few years and they have a little boy together. Last year we hired our son-in-law to work on the family farm on salary for the first year. …

November 13, 2015 5:00 pm(0)

Ensure money for heirs by covering long-term care

Dear Michael: With interest we read your column about how we can use some of our retirement funds to provide for long-term care in the future, but can’t seem to find the exact article. Can you reprint or explain again how this would work? We have a significant amount in retirement funds, but…

October 28, 2015 2:30 pm(0)

Would you take a few minutes for an informal survey?

We are doing an informal survey of all the clients we’ve done business with over the past 30-some years.

October 13, 2015 4:00 pm(0)

Observations taken at recent Big Iron farm show

Every year, I sit for three days at the Big Iron Show in Fargo in September and each year I write a column about my impressions of the show and the mood of both the attendees and the vendors. Many vendors are also farmers or ranchers, so their outlook is also very important.

October 01, 2015 5:42 pm(0)

Not sure how to ‘stop’ after years of focusing on ‘go’

Case No. 443 – Bill and Patty came to see me. Like many farm couples, they had no idea where to start with their estate planning.

August 19, 2015 8:41 am(0)
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