6 QUESTIONS TO DECIDE: ‘WHO GETS THE FARM?’

farmby Jennifer Bearden, UF/IFAS Extension Agent

Farming involves so much planning, implementing and evaluating of farming methods that farmers sometimes overlook the retirement and succession planning part of the job. Farm assets such as land, equipment and livestock will need to be considered if a farmer retires or unexpectedly dies.

Conversation Starters

The first–and, sometimes, hardest–step to building a success plan is to talk with family members about the process. Here are a few questions from the Farm Journal Legacy Project to get the conversation started:

  • Are you interested in participating in the family operation? How?
  • Are you prepared to assume that responsibility? If no, what would it take to prepare?
  • Should family members not active in the operation attain or retain an ownership interest? If no, how should family assets be distributed?
  • If you want to be included in the operation, are you willing to invest in an ownership interest?
  • What is your biggest question, or unanswered concern, regarding succession intentions?
  • Are there any other succession-related topics you would like to add to the agenda for an upcoming meeting?

Educate Yourself

The University of Florida’s Institute of Food and Agricultural Sciences Northwest Extension District is offering new personal finance educational programs to farmers.

Anyone in the agriculture industry can attend the Extension’s AgSave$ Summit, 9 am to 1 pm February 23rd, in Marianna, which focuses on retirement planning and succession planning. Lunch is provided free, thanks to the generous sponsors, Farm Credit of Northwest Florida.

Our AgSav$ Workshop Series, which focuses on securing your farm’s future, begins March 24th. The series costs $55 and will include a Farm Journal Legacy Project Workbook.

Call 689-5850 or email bearden@ufl.edu for more information.

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