Irvine Partner, Renee Gabbard, published an article entitled “Sow Estate Planning Ideas for Farmers and Ranch Owners” in the December 2013 issue of “Estate Planning”.

With wealth often concentrated in a low-basis illiquid asset, farmers may benefit from a contrarian analysis of certain common estate planning strategies.

Representing a farming family is a rewarding experience in the career arc of an estate planner.  Farming family members are literally the most “down to earth” clients.  The planner also has the intellectual challenge of exploring unique areas of the Internal Revenue Code that deal specifically with closely held business interests and special-use valuations for farmland.  When evaluating the consequences of various Code provisions, the practitioner should perform a  critical review and be ready to take a contrarian position.  For example, the common estate planning strategy of making lifetime gifts could have adverse outcomes when ranch and farmland interests are involved.

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