Ownership & Leadership Transition

Family Owned Businesses and Our National Economy

Family-owned businesses continue to dominate our economy, but they also continue to struggle with issues of succession. SCORE, a nationwide non-profit organization that provides business mentoring, just completed a survey ...

Six Best Practices for Family Leadership

Stephen Campbell, Managing Director and Head of the North America Family Office Group at Citi Private Bank, recently authored a post about successfully navigating the generational transfer of leadership in ...

How to Survive Transition Shock in a Family Business

Otis Baskin, a consultant of the Family Business Consulting Group, recently authored a post in Family Business Magazine, reiterating the importance or preparation and planning in family business success. Mr. ...

The Family Business Constitution

Family businesses are complicated, and the roles that family members play in them usually evolve from non-planned events and circumstances. When conflicts arise in a family business, they are often ...

Passing the Baton: Lessons Learned

On May 16, 2017, Davis Wright Tremaine LLP hosted 85 owners and managers of family-owned businesses at the latest edition of our Family Business Legacy Series.  Mike Garvey, the co-founder ...

Governance & Business Operations

Family Business Owners, Gift Away! – No “Clawback” Issue!

When Congress enacted tax reform in December 2017, federal gift and estate tax “basic exclusion amount” (often referred to as the “gift and estate tax exemption”) increased to $10 million ...

The Venn Diagram That Revolutionized Theories on Family Businesses Design

The three-circle family business model was introduced in 1978 by Renato Tagiuri and John Davis at Harvard Business School. The model represents three categories of individuals within a family business ...

Introducing DWT’s Guide to Governance

Businesses and the families that own them are each “governed” by a structure and set of rules. Often, that structure is informal and the rules unwritten, vague and inconsistently applied. ...

Enhancing the Family Business Through the Use of Special Funds

Just as a family strives to provide funding for opportunities, a family business should consider establishing funds as reserves for particular purposes. According to Ramez A. Baasiri, author of Interrupted ...

Why Every Family Business Needs a Board of Directors

Most advisors recommend that a family business have and use a board of directors. In fact, the majority of closely-held corporations are formed with boards of directors, but those boards frequently ...

Estate Planning

The Importance of Planning Ahead for Succession of a Family Business with Active and Inactive Family Participants

You have spent a substantial portion of your life building or continuing a successful family business, and you have some children (or other family members) who are active in the ...

Let ILITs Pick up the Tab – Trusts That Protect Your Interest in the Family Business

It is common that one of the largest assets in a family business owner’s estate is his or her interest in the family business. This situation can be problematic because ...

This Time Is Different: You Really Do Need to Update Your Will and Durable Power of Attorney

With the advent of higher exemptions with respect to the Federal Gift, Estate, and Generation-Skipping Transfer Tax passed last December (referred to as the 2017 Tax Act), it really is ...

Don’t Leave Contaminated Real Property to Your Kids — A Toxic Legacy!

We invite your review of the linked article from Bloomberg BNA’s Environmental Due Diligence Guide Report™. There are dangers inherent in leaving your heirs real property that may have been contaminated ...

Estate Planning Strategies Driven by Interest Rates

There are a number of estate planning strategies that work well to move assets in an efficient manner from one generation to another within a family. In evaluating any such ...

Growth & Exit Strategies

Family Businesses and Tech – Leveling the Playing Field

There is a belief that family businesses are behind the curve when it comes to embracing new technology in the company structure. In a 2016 family business survey, 37 percent ...

Should a Family Business Consider an IPO as an Exit Strategy?

There are a multitude of ways to realize ownership transition–some simple, some complex, some a safe bet and some full of risks. For the ambitious, successful family-owned company that wants ...

ESOP: An Exit Strategy

One way for business owners to transition their ownership to their employees and to receive liquidity for their shares is through the creation of an employee stock ownership plan (ESOP). ...

Retirement is Coming: How to Broker Your Throne Away

We’ve all heard the chatter (or read about it in this blog). The owners of family businesses need to start thinking about their exit strategy. To put it in perspective, ...

Mezzanine Financing for Family-Owned Businesses

On June 6, 2017, Davis Wright Tremaine LLP hosted the latest edition of our Family Business Study Group, where David Levine of Prudential Capital Group and Hugh Campbell of Cascadia ...

Employment

ADA Considerations for Your Family Business

Compliance with the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) is a topic of concern for all businesses. All too often, we assume the ADA only applies to large employers or in ...

Employment Laws to Keep in Mind for Family Business Owners

There is often a temptation for small and mid-sized family-owned businesses to disregard employment laws, particularly when considering a family member’s employment, but those laws generally do not have an ...

She’s Right for the Job – Women in Family Business

Family businesses are increasingly encouraging women. Of family businesses surveyed, almost 60 percent have women in top management positions and over 30 percent list a female as the next successor. ...

Paid Family Leave in Washington: What You Need to Know

On July 5, 2017 Governor Jay Inslee signed into law Washington’s new paid family and medical leave measure, making Washington the fifth state to create a paid family leave program ...

What Family Businesses Should Know about Washington’s New Paid Family Medical Leave Law

On July 5, 2017, Washington State joined a handful of states mandating paid family and medical leave. The new leave program, to be funded by employer and employee premiums, will ...

Beyond Business

The Missing Piece to Your Succession Plan – The Psychology of Relinquishment

You’ve gone through the motions of succession planning—groomed your successor, established and executed all the attorney-advised documents—and now you’re prepared to hand off your business, right? Not necessarily. Many family business ...

Survey Says: Good Governance Pays Big Dividends

The Pacific Family Business Institute (PFBI) has just released the results of its 2018 survey. With support from Cascadia Capital, Moss Adams and Davis Wright Tremaine, PFBI interviewed 81 family ...

The “Opportunist” Mindset Every Family Business Should Have

Starting your family business is a period of excitement, chance, and perseverance. Once your business has survived this initial creation period, your business’ leadership and employees must maintain an opportunist ...

Interrupted Entrepreneurship

Each generation embraces, refines, and transforms a family business. Sometimes this cycle can be continuous, but more likely it is fraught with “interruptions.” In his new book, Interrupted Entrepreneurship, author ...

Kids and Cash: How to Develop a Plan to End Financial Dependence

What do you do when your initial generosity towards a family member has resulted in long-term financial dependence? How do you break this vicious cycle and still maintain family relationships? ...
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