Author Archive

Full Coverage or Just Liability on Your Estate Plan

Written by Michael Baron on . Posted in Farm versus Non-Farm

Dear Michael:

We have two sons – one that’s been with us for a while and one that’s just come back to the farm. In our area, land values have risen four hundred percent in the last five to seven years and, between the machinery and the land, these two boys will have to get their hands around five to six million dollars in land, machinery, inputs, etc. that we have as a part of our farm operation. We have two other children but my husband feels if the two boys take over the farm then the two non-farming children should split our savings and life insurance. This amount is nowhere near even one million dollars – maybe half of that. Do you think this is fair to the other children or am I just not seeing the business side of this? – Mom in Between

Dear Mom in Between: The son who has been on the farm contributed to the growth of the farm and the one just starting will contribute to the growth in the farm.

However, like most parents, you are in that ‘tween’ stage, where you can’t really say ‘if it weren’t for my boys, I never would have survived the 80’s’. The boys aren’t old enough to have been born in the 80’s. On the other hand, they have helped during this incredible growth spurt that’s occurred in the last decade.

There are arguments both for and against this type of estate plan.

What happens if you leave the farm to the two boys and one decides to sell out after you die and walks away with the best offer? Is there anything in place in your estate plan covering if I give your (farm child(ren) more than my other children (non-farming) how can I protect my non-farm children if my farm child becomes a ‘non-farmer’ shortly after my death? How long after I die is my farm child(ren) able to do what he wants with the property?

In most cases, people will put into their plan ‘if the farm child(ren) stay with the farm for at least ten years or to age fifty-five – whichever comes first – he is free to do what he wants with the farmland given to him. If he should sell prior to this time or age, then he shall share the proceeds of this sale with his non-farming siblings as he, too, is now non-farming.

What happens if one of the boys gets divorced or dies? Are you going to be happy if one of the daughter-in-laws then inherits the farmland from him (as next of kin with a simple will) and she then remarries to another farmer? Your non-farm children could see someone else farming their parent’s farm.

Maybe a solution would be to state in your estate plan ‘prior to any property being passed to him from my estate, he shall have a post-nuptial agreement with his spouse that this farmland – if he should die – shall pass to a trust for the eventual benefit of his children (your grandchildren) with the spouse receiving all income from the farmland – unless they should remarry. If there is a divorce action, this property is not to be considered a part of this legal action’. It sounds harsh… but you are talking about millions of dollars of property. This goes both ways – if you have a daughter or son involved in farming for the in-laws.

Last, but not least, when you state in your will the non-farming children will receive the ‘residuary cash’ of your estate, remember this – before the money gets to them, this is where the money comes from in the estate to pay for legal fees, burial costs, probate, taxes (income and estate) cost of health care (including any long-term care debts) and any and all outstanding debts.

Your non-farm children are going to be hopping mad when they see their brothers getting millions of dollars in farmland, machinery, etc. – but all the costs of the estate are being taken out of ‘their share’. You need to protect these inheritances for the non-farm heirs by setting up a proper estate plan.

Back in the 80’s, it was common for the non-farm children to receive a percentage share of what the farming child received. This was normally not a lot of money by today’s standards. However, getting fifty thousand dollars in the 80’s is like getting three to four hundred thousand dollars today.

Farmers seem to accept that machinery now costs hundreds of thousands of dollars, land costs millions, and costs and incomes are up commensurately. But for some reason, they seem to have a real difficulty using the same dollar quotient in developing an equitable plan for their children. Fuel and fertilizer could go up thousands of dollars and the average farmer would barely blink an eye.

Most farmers wouldn’t dream of buying a new truck, combine or tractor without putting full coverage on it – yet will walk around with just basic liability coverage on their entire estate plan and, essentially, ‘hope for the best’ for the future of the entire family farm worth millions and millions of dollars.

“Keeping the Family Farm in the Family”
Great Plains Diversified Services, Inc.
1424 W. Century Ave., Suite 208
Bismarck, ND 58503-0917
Telephone: 701-255-4079
Fax: 701-255-6106
Toll Free: 1-800-373-4078

Estate Planning is Goal Setting!

Written by Michael Baron on . Posted in General Estate Planning

Dear Michael:

We have been talking for years about what we want to put into an estate plan. Our son has been working with us, but he fears he will take on too much debt if he starts taking over our livestock and machinery operation. Even though he is the logical choice, he seems hesitant about what to do in taking on some of this risk. In our day, we didn’t have the choice of being hesitant – it was kind of thrust upon us whether we liked it or not and we had to go through a lot of tough years. Now, we can’t seem to put our plan together because we just can’t tell what he is thinking. What should we do? No Mind-Reader

Dear No Mind-Reader: I can think of a few basic reasons why your son hasn’t jumped into the farm operation with two feet. Maybe he is dealing with someone in the upper echelon management (Dad and Mom) who is a bit too overbearing and he doesn’t want to upset the applecart and live a life of disappointing his parent(s). Or, maybe he just doesn’t have the aggressive gene.

If it’s the first thing, whoever in upper management who is not listening, or shutting off ideas before he gets started, ought to learn to let him make a few mistakes.

Oftentimes, parents are overeducated on the right and wrong way to do things – those who’ve been through the school of hard knocks. Or, maybe they are parents who don’t want their children to go through the same school of hard knocks the way they did.

No one out there worth his or her salt has ever made one hundred percent correct decisions throughout their agri-business career. Everyone’s gambled, lost and then gambled again and won in small business. That is small business. Being good and being bad at small business is a thing he needs to experience for himself. He has to know one thing: Good times and bad times have one thing in common – neither one last forever.

If you’ve been preventing him from making some small decisions, let him go and give it a try. Now is a good time to try a few things and if he fails, he fails. The lesson learned isn’t whether or not he succeeded or failed – it’s that he can fail, pull himself up out of the mess and he can go on. If you’re not getting knocked on your butt once in a while in small business, you’re failing.

If he won’t make decisions, you’re going to have to be brave enough to toss him into the deep end of the pool and let him sink or swim – on a small scale, of course. You’re going to have to force him to make some decisions (take on this field and plant what you want, buy these cows, etc.)

If he absolutely won’t do it, remember five percent of the people make up the leaders and the other ninety-five percent are followers. You can’t leave a farm operation to a ‘follower’ and expect it to succeed. If he just won’t go, maybe you saddled up the wrong pony to take over?

The other reason I find a lot of kids are reticent to do anything is because they don’t have a clear picture in front of them.

One of the key elements in estate planning is to write down what you’d want to see happen in the event of your death(s). Later, when we bring the farming child in, after lengthy discussions with the parents, and we explain it to him, it’s usually the first time this child has been shown a direction of where things are headed in his familys’ business.

As surprising as that might seem to you, even more surprising is normally this is the first time the parents have put these goals down in writing, as well!

When you put goals down on paper and both sides of the equation – parents and child(ren) – see these goals, it sets the brain in motion from both sides working towards those goals. Suddenly, Mom and Dad understand their estate planning goals, and see all the little day-to-day decisions they make along the way in life will affect the long-term future of the farm. They hadn’t seen it in this light before because they never thought of it in terms of ‘what if I’m not here and I have to write these goals down now?’ (commonly known as a will).

Junior, for the first time, sees the order of life, of maturing and aging, and finality of death and understands the day-to-day decisions he makes now will have a huge long-term effect on his own life, his family’s life, and his success.

Estate planning forces you to put your goals down in writing and its really fun to see business with both sides of the equation tracking towards their goals – now that they finally know what those are.

You’ll be surprised how quickly Jr. starts making better and better decision on the farm when he knows where he’s heading and how he’s supposed to get there. Your transition from active to retired, should you live, will eventually be made so very much easier and will still reflect the same goals you put into your estate plan.

Goals aren’t set in stone when put into writing and are subject to changing conditions. However, not putting goals down in writing, in your estate plan, just makes everyone wander around without knowing where they’re going – and then you get mad at Jr. for not being more decisive. Maybe it’s not his fault!

 “Keeping the Family Farm in the Family”
Great Plains Diversified Services, Inc.
1424 W. Century Ave., Suite 208, Bismarck, ND 58503 
Telephone: 701-255-4079
Fax: 701-255-6106
Toll Free: 1-800-373-4078

Shortcuts Using LLC’s

Written by Michael Baron on . Posted in LLC's & LLP's

Dear Michael:

We have a very complex life since the oil industry started. We had a fairly good sized ranch before the oil. This ranch alone, with the growth in per acre value over the past ten years, is probably close to ten million. Then we started getting minerals off of the land we owned and we don’t know for certain what they are worth although the income has been good. Last, but not least, we helped our son start a welding business. He didn’t have much money, so we started an LLP – under the guidance of our attorney – and gave him twenty percent of the business. We started the LLC as a shelter for liability to our other assets, but now another advisor is telling us to use this LLC and another LLC to own our minerals and perhaps part of our ranch. Are we doing the right thing by jumping into all of these different entities to protect estate taxes? Is the LLC the ‘magic fairy dust’ we’ve been looking for? – Do You Believe in Miracles?

Dear Miracle – Unfortunately, miracles only happen on ice and we have to go back to Al Michaels call back in 1980 on the Olympics to even hear that again!

In an LLP (Limited Liability Partnership) or LLC (Limited Liability Company) you have two things that may be accomplished.

One, of course, is the limitation of liability to the assets held within the company itself. In other words, in your welding business, if you cause an accident in the course of your business and get sued, the other party can only receive assets owned by this LLC. This is a good argument for using LLC’s for high risk businesses – such as one with trucks out on the road.

Now, using LLC’s or LLP’s to reduce estate taxes is a wholly different issue from limiting liability exposures.

In the old days (ten years ago) if I fractured ownership in my assets by gifting shares to my children, I could discount those gifts by as much as forty percent. I could also claim the remainder value of my assets – in my estate – should be discounted by this amount, due to loss of market value.

IRS, after seeing LLP’s and LLC’s for so many years, has now devised formulas you need to use to claim these. There are still a few firms out there claiming to get 30% or 40% discounts – in order to drum up clients – but if you call a reputable CPA firm – like Eide-Bailey – they would shy away from these promises.

In the meantime, if I was, say, working with someone who promised me huge deductions in my estate and I spent a lot of time and money gifting to my children (not knowing IRS as much as ten years to disallow these gifts and/or their discount) I might be blissfully ignorant of the storm heading my way.

In addition, you’ve also just given away chunks of your business, your ranch, and/or your minerals and haven’t really put into terms what that means. Right now, all your focused on is how much you kept from going to IRS.

You see, along with ‘gifting’ of LLC shares or LLP percentages, you also gave away your right to receive all of the income from these entities. In either an LLC or LLP, the ‘profit’ of the business will be split between all of the owner entities – voting and non-voting alike. You may have just given away all of your income and/or control to avoid estate taxes. You may have handed it to your kids – who may not be ready to handle this type of ‘free’ money.

I’ve always wondered why a person would give up control and/or fifty to seventy percent of their income – especially income that could drop dramatically in a few years when rags to riches turns into rags again – when they could have set up a simple trust to pay estate taxes – using life insurance – and paying five to ten cents on the dollar in most cases. Some companies even have ‘return of premium’ – if you don’t need the coverage anymore – and you get your money back.

But some people are so anti-life insurance, they’d rather give up three hundred thousand dollars in income to avoid five hundred thousand dollars in estate taxes – and all they had to do was gift fifteen thousand dollars a year to an irrevocable life insurance trust. They can maintain control and spend the other two hundred and eighty-five thousand. Talk about cutting of your nose to spite your face.

There will always be those people out there looking for the next ‘fairy dust’ to not pay estate or income taxes, and there are plenty of people out there selling ‘fairy dust’ – but long-term the costs of setting these plans up is going to cost them so much, much more than if they’d done just a simple annual gift and let the insurance company pay the tax liability. It’s the same when you pay your car insurance, your home insurance, your farm liability insurance – you pass liability on to an insurance company.

“Keeping the Family Farm in the Family”
Great Plains Diversified Services, Inc.
1424 W. Century Ave., Suite 208
Bismarck, ND 58503-0917
Telephone: 701-255-4079
Fax: 701-255-6106
Toll Free: 1-800-373-4078

 

 

What You Think Doesn’t Matter!

Written by Michael Baron on . Posted in General Estate Planning

Dear Michael,

We have a child that wants to farm. When we recently sat down with our attorney, he asked what the value of the land was and we told him under one thousand an acre. We set up a plan where our son can buy out the family farm interest from his siblings, but we really didn’t specify the value of the land in the will. Later, some land, next to ours, went up for sale and it sold for over twice that value. It’s got us thinking if our attorney did things right in our will to make certain our son will continue to farm? – Not Worth Two Thousand.

Dear Not Worth Two Thousand: When you set up your estate plan or transition plan, if you’re not giving the professional helping you the right numbers for the true value of your property, you’ve set up a plan that’s obsolete even before the ink is dry.

The results? Either your farming son won’t end up farming or your non-farm children are going to be so upset they’ll hire a different attorney to get paid a ‘fair share’ for their land.

I’ve listened to all of the arguments.

‘You can’t pay for land at that high price’. What you’re saying is ‘My farm operation can’t make it pay at that high price’. That doesn’t make any difference. There are plenty other people out there – farmers and non-farmers alike – who do think they can make it pay at that price and will pay that price. If your farm son has to contend with these buyers, and you’re six feet deep, he’s going down.

‘Land is going to come down in value someday and I don’t want to set it too high!’ Historically, land has gone down two times – the Great Depression and the eighties when fifty percent of the farmers were wiped off the map by high interest rates, inability to borrow, double digit inflation and no fuel. It was the ‘Great Farm Depression’ of our generation. Do we really want to have to go through times like these again to see farmland values decline? And unless they do happen, farmland is not going to decline.

This list of justifications goes on and on.

Let me tell you the actual truth about what happens when you die.

Nobody cares what ‘you thought’ the land was worth, or what your son ‘should’ pay for land, or what the future ‘might’ hold. Everybody is going to look at the appraised values when you die and, if you son is lucky, he’ll be able to work off of appraised values. If he’s not so lucky, and one of the non-farming children gets a bid from the big farmer in the county, then your son is done. Of course, he was already done using appraised values so the higher bid won’t matter if appraisals are twice as high as what you told your planner to use as a basis for your estate plan.

You don’t realize what danger you’ve placed your farm in when you ‘undervalue’ your assets by such a large amount.

The same goes for machinery that you think will wear out or be gone by the time you die, but it’s worth close to a million dollars today. If you die, your son’s going to pay market price and, unlike land, he’s going to have to pay that in a lot shorter time. Same goes with livestock operations that are an all-time high value.

The same is true for people who did their estate plans five to ten years ago and used true numbers from this period of time. We’ve seen a two to four hundred percent increase in value in the past decade and yet you’re running around with a will from 2001 or 2008. It’s just not going to be realistic with today’s values.

You can justify a lot of arguments why things are so high today and shouldn’t be. But do your really want your family farm to end because you weren’t realistic in your estate planning? That’s stubbornness to a fault – and the next generation is going to pay for this by losing the family farm.

“Keeping the Family Farm in the Family”
Great Plains Diversified Services, Inc.
1424 W. Century Ave., Suite 208
Bismarck, ND 58503-0917
Telephone: 701-255-4079
Fax: 701-255-6106
Toll Free: 1-800-373-4078

Credit Due

Written by Michael Baron on . Posted in Equalization

Dear Michael:

We have been farming with my parents for many years now. Even though we’ve bought some land and some machinery, my parents still own most of the land. When we came back to the farm operation, my Dad was using old machinery, was using outdated farming techniques, and still owed quite a bit of money on the place. I came back and helped him update, slowly but surely, and now we have equipment that’s increased yields which, in turn, has paid off all of his debts.

My problem is I helped Dad and Mom do all of this – including taking little to nothing in wages for many years while my wife worked off the farm. Now it sees I’m going to have to buy out shares from my siblings when they die – at a reduced rate of Fair Market Value – but with today’s Fair Market Value, they can discount it by fifty percent and I still won’t be able to afford it? How do I get Dad and Mom to give me some credit for what I’ve done for the family farm? – Credit Due.

Dear Credit Due: In your particular situation, it’s likely the family farm wouldn’t exist any longer if you hadn’t come back to work with Dad and Mom through the lean times.

What’s bad is that Dad and Mom haven’t changed their estate plan to reflect the amount of help and expertise you brought to the family farm. As little as ten years ago, there were only two major factors in building a family farm – labor and money. In the past decade, we’ve seen a new factor emerge – technology. Without you bringing technology and new farming practices the family farm, the farm wouldn’t be there today.

Dad and Mom grew up in a generation where you never had too much, but if you worked hard enough and managed your money right, you could eke out a living.

When you came back with new ideas, it created new income. This new income was plowed back into the farm operation.

Albeit nicer for you to have a great farm operation with better buildings, better machinery and more value in the land, long term your contribution to the family farm is working against you. Especially if your siblings are now going to share in this new farm wealth created in Dad and Mom’s estate.

To be fair with Dad and Mom, however, this growth in the past decade has been meteoric, to say the least. It’s put Dad and Mom into a ‘let’s wait and see’ mode. Everyone’s in a holding pattern right now as they wait to see what the value of land and other farm assets are finally going to be when they die so then they can make their estate plan.

Many people have seen their land values go up two, three or even four hundred percent in the past decade. A reason Dad and Mom might be holding off on plan, which includes you, is they are waiting to see what land values are going to be. They’re from a generation who believes ‘what goes up must come down’ and, secretly, they believe land will drop off in value – and it might.

Whether or not there will be a drop in land value or not is financially inconsequential to the estate planning process, however. If land values drop, it’s due to the farm economy finally taking the dreaded drop off in incomes that’s been predicted for years.

Should this happen, if their plan was to wait until land drops off in value, economically you’re going to have less income to buy the assets from your siblings than you did before – so your problem is not resolved at all by a drop off in farmland value.

The second issue which might be stopping your parents from recognizing what you’ve brought to the family farm operation is they really don’t know how to quantify – in dollars and cents – what your contribution has been.

That’s why we put a new tool on our website – Equalization – that you can factor in the number of years you’ve been working there, what value you’ve brought to the family farm operation based on what your parents had before you started farming, what they’ve added since you came back, and what percentage you shouldn’t have to buy back from the siblings who didn’t contribute to the growth and profitability of the family farm.

It’ll certainly give you something to talk about with your parents and part of the form also shows whether or not you can even feasibly take over the family farm upon their death. Once they see the real numbers, it’s hard to argue with the fact if they do nothing, the farm will die with them.

“Keeping the Family Farm in the Family”
Great Plains Diversified Services, Inc.
1424 W. Century Ave., Suite 208
Bismarck, ND 58503-0917
Telephone: 701-255-4079
Fax: 701-255-6106
Toll Free: 1-800-373-4078

Tools You Can Use

Written by Michael Baron on . Posted in General Estate Planning

Dear Michael:

We read with some interest about your new web site you were starting to help farmers and ranchers. At the time, you were having some difficulty with the site and you said you’d let us know when it was ready. We use the computer somewhat but it’s kind of limited to email and games. Our son, who farms with us, uses his computer quite a bit, so maybe he can help us. When will you be ready? – Waiting

Dear Waiting: The site is finally up and running – hopefully without too many snafus popping up. Our web designer says it takes about a month for all the bugs to work themselves out and the only way to find them is for people to use the site and let us know what works and what doesn’t.

On our web site, we have a variety of items for everyone. You don’t have to be a computer geek to use the web site. I designed so it can’t be that complicated.

We have our ‘Farm and Ranch Magazine’ column posted every two weeks. If you travel or like to receive your reading material even when you’re on the go, you can sign up to receive these columns on your computer, tablet or even your cell phone. You’ll be able to read along – even when you’ve got the ‘auto-steer’ set.

We have information posted on income tax rates for the coming 2014 year, although not being a CPA, all I do is post the rates off of the IRS web site. This section gives people an idea where they want to be or need to be when they are selling commodities and what probable tax bracket they would be in.

As time goes on, we’ll be posting ideas written by guest CPA’s about how to handle farm income and/or other income as your life progresses with tips and tricks on how to lower your income tax rates without going into debt.

There is an estate tax calculator on the web site. You put in the approximate values of your entire estate and determine if you have an estate tax problem or not. If you want to be certain you don’t have an estate tax problem, use ‘recent land sales’ in your area as a value for your own farmland – because that’s what IRS is going to be using. You may never sell it for that amount nor expect your children to pay that amount but, put quite simply, IRS only cares about what you ‘could’ sell it for.

We also have the Equitable Distribution of Assets to Farming and Non-Farming Children finally up and running.

This section allows you to put in your basic asset information regarding your current status by helping you list your assets in two categories – farming and non-farming.

This is something I do routinely with my clients to show them what they have in farm assets versus what they have in non-farm assets such as savings, unsold commodities life insurance proceeds, retirement plans, etc. This is key to helping you set up your farming child for success. This will show how much you have to give to the non-farming children in non-farm assets to offset what the farming child needs in farm assets to succeed.

This continues into a section to help you determine what value your farming child has provided to you, to the family farm operation as a whole, and what percentage of the total value of your family farm your farming child has earned in ‘sweat equity’ over the years. It’s pretty easy to use and gives you real numbers you can use to quantify there contribution to the family farm.

The last section then boils all the numbers down for you – what happens if you give the farm to all the children, what happens if you give the entire farm to one child and non-farm assets to the non-farming children and what happens if you give the ‘sweat equity’ portion to the child who stuck it out with you.

There’s even farm rent and mortgage calculators to give you real numbers as to what your farming child will face someday. Now you can break down all the ‘don’t know’s’ into real life numbers to help you in planning your estate.

I’ll be demonstrating how to use this web site at the KMOT Ag Expo and the KFYR Agri-International each day with a one-hour seminar to teach even the most computer challenged person how to make sense of the numbers. Look for me there and plan on attending at 2:00 PM each day.

“Keeping the Family Farm in the Family”
Great Plains Diversified Services, Inc.
1424 W. Century Ave., Suite 208
Bismarck, ND 58503-0917
Telephone: 701-255-4079
Fax: 701-255-6106
Toll Free: 1-800-373-4078

New Years Resolve

Written by Michael Baron on . Posted in Partnerships

Dear Michael:

We have talked year after year about getting our estate planning done. Our two boys have worked with us on the farm although one of them has a full-time job, is married, with kids, and our other son is single (getting married) who wants to quit his job and farm full-time if he can with the amount of land we have. We are old enough to think about retiring, but still want to be involved in the farm operation until our sons make up their mind what they want to do. They seem to think they can do a joint venture of some sorts, but we are unsure? It’s a New Year, we need new answers. – Happy Same Old, Same Old.

Dear Same Old: If you haven’t joined the mass exodus to spend winter in warmer climes, then maybe your New Year’s resolution should be to get this done before spring’s work. I find many people put this off during the holidays, and then they try to get around to it for a few more weeks, and then the weather changes and the head shifts over to spring planting and another winter passes without results. Maybe 2014 is ‘The Year’ for finally putting this behind you. How good would that feel? At least when it’s 20 below, you can get something done!

In regards to your sons farming together as a joint venture – with one considering full-time farming and the other part-time farming – it’s kind of putting two horses into the traces with one of them pulling when it feels like it while the other one is pulling for all it’s worth to pull the load. Eventually, and inevitably, the two horses will get ‘snippy’ with one another and try to pull in different directions. This usually ends up with the cart getting up-ended.

If they want to farm together, then it’s time to sit down and work out the rules of their joint venture now – before they even get started. Once you’re into it, it gets harder and harder to separate whose is who’s.  

If the son who wants to farm full-time is more serious about farming, then all attempts should be made to be sure that if they own property jointly – such as farmland – the two agree now as to the terms of what happens during their joint venture and what happens if they decide to split up down the road. Kind of a pre-nuptial agreement for farming brothers before they tie the farming knot.

Such an agreement would have such things as if one brother wants to own his land but not participate in farming, what is the full-time farming brother’s option for renting the land from his sibling? Leaving it at ‘first right to rent’ isn’t strong enough – especially if these two are getting ‘snippy’ with one another at that time. Perhaps you want to specify that it has to be County Average or perhaps you want to get more particular and state that it will be Township Average based on rents paid in the townships where the land lies.

The agreement should also contain what happens to the land should either brother die and their land passes to their heirs. in most states, even if you specify your land is to be sold to the other brother, the spouses have marital rights to claim the property or portions thereof.

Now, all of a sudden, the farming brother could find himself partners with his brother’s wife – who may get remarried to another farmer. Happens – and it’s a disaster in the making. If the brother who was married dies and has kids, does he want his entire share to go to his wife? Without a will, it’s likely it will.

The best thing to do with your New Year’s resolution for 2014 is to get to it. We’ve had the perfect weather – cold, nasty, stuck in the house a lot – for doing estate planning. Some years, like this one, are custom made to do the something very productive for a change – get things down on paper about how things will enfold in years to come.

You have to realize what you do today in your estate plan may not fit everything tomorrow, but it’s still better than leaving it flapping in the wind and ‘hoping’ everything goes well. It’s doubly important now that prices may be changing, and farming may be going through a change in income and expense for the foreseeable future. Find someone you can talk to, get it down on paper, and then everyone can focus on what needs to be done.

“Keeping the Family Farm in the Family”
Great Plains Diversified Services, Inc. 
1424 W. Century Ave., Suite 208
Bismarck, ND 58503-0917 
Telephone: 701-255-4079
 Fax: 701-255-6106 Toll Free: 1-800-373-4078

Welcome

Written by Michael Baron on . Posted in Uncategorized

Welcome to Great Plains Diversified Services On-line version of Michael Baron’s Column, Keeping the Family Farm in the Family. Create your own user name and password in order to ask questions or leave a post if you desire to comment. All posts will be reviewed before being added to the website.

Michael Baron is not an attorney. Information given through written, verbal, or electronic means by Michael Baron or Great Plains Diversified Services, Inc. is not to be construed as legal advice. An attorney, tax advisor, or other registered advisor is needed for the completion of the estate planning process. An attorney must be consulted for legal advice and the drafting of legal documents.