Exit stage right – What to think about when you’re ready to leave your business


A succession plan will help assure business continuity. If you’ve built a successful business, you know that having a plan is critical to making it work. By the same token, readying your business for your retirement is an important piece of the puzzle.

While there are no set rules in a succession plan, you may want to include such details as:

  • The successor: family member, business partner or someone new who will buy out your share
  • Timeframe/transition period
  • Key personnel changes and skill retention
  • Training and development of new leadership
  • Legal considerations: buy-sell agreement, estate plan/will
  • Risk management
  • Communication strategy
  • Financial considerations: retirement income, insurance, sale price, tax implications

Protecting your most valuable asset: You

Your exit strategy recognizes when you are planning to retire from the business. It can also address any potential surprises that may impact your ability to remain in charge.

You may develop a major illness or injury that takes you away from day-to-day operations. Having insurance in place can ensure your company will continue to function in your absence. While also protecting your own earnings and family, particularly if you’re not able to return:

  • Disability Insurance: All owners should have their own insurance that covers their monthly earnings in the case of an illness or injury that requires long-term healing. It may include a buy-out clause.
  • Business Overhead Expense Insurance: Provides funding to the business of any overhead expenses (such as payroll or rent) if these costs are jeopardized by being away for an extended period.
  • Critical Illness Insurance: This is generally a lump sum payment that helps you cover your bills if you have a serious illness.
  • Key Person Life Insurance: A life insurance strategy may include a payout to the business for continuity, or to your estate to minimize any tax implications. Life insurance proceeds equalize payments to heirs.

If you plan to retire, you need a plan

If it’s time for you to hand over the reins, your succession plan should address the time horizon for transition. You may want to execute a buy-sell agreement with partners or co-owners. The agreement outlines the circumstances of the exit and the price for your share of the business. Insurance can be used to help minimize the tax impact of a small business sale and to finance retirement income.

There are many tax-efficient ways to protect your business and help you transition to your retirement.

Contact me if you’d like to learn more about these business-owner strategies.

Click here if you would like to learn more about your options and if we can assist you with your wealth management, investment, retirement and business planning.

This website is for informational purposes only and is not intended to be specific advice or recommendations. For specific advice or recommendations you would need to meet directly with one of our advisers.

What to do When Receiving Life Insurance Money

Life Insurance Money

Recently, I contributed to an article about receiving life insurance money. The Q&A is below followed by a link to Melanie’s full article on the website Meet Fabric.

So do you have an order of things/checklist that people should go through when getting a life insurance payout? 

Receiving a life insurance payout is no different than a financial plan without life insurance proceeds. People have current needs to address. These vary from paying-off debt, building an emergency fund, saving for retirement, replacing the income of the deceased, paying for the final expenses of the deceased, etc. As a financial advisor providing comprehensive planning, I look at everything for my clients. So upon receiving a life insurance payout, the families needs are addressed first. Next, a go-forward plan is built upon their current situation.

For example, the proceeds going to a family who is debt free and the surviving spouse is still able to work. The priority may be to fund a college education account and increase retirement savings. In another example, the surviving spouse is a stay-at-home parent, and carrying mortgage and credit card debt. For this family, it may be in their best interest to pay-off the debt and use the remaining funds to support day-to-day living expenses. 

Also, one of the stories included someone who received a life insurance payout and kept the money in the interest-bearing account from the company and not get a check into her account. Do experts typically advise leaving it in the interest-bearing account, or taking it out and investing it instead?

Upon the death of a loved one, we encourage the beneficiary to receive the proceeds directly. This allows the beneficiary to pay final expenses and evaluate where the remaining proceeds should be allocated. If the beneficiary already has a comfortable savings account balance, and has a long-term investment plan, than yes, investing is a better option for long-term growth than an interest bearing account. Albeit, taking on more risk.

Do you have any tips for someone that is really emotional and maybe not in the best mental space to make financial decisions? How long should they wait to make a decision? How can they do what’s “best” for their money while dealing with grief? 

There is always emotional grievance. That is why hiring a financial professional to guide you through this period is essential. Your advisor will make decisions that exclude the emotions. Part of the planning I do for clients is to run updated scenarios, with the top industry software, of their financial position including the proceeds. This removes the emotions of planning and allows the family to make the best decisions, taking into account multiple options with their proceeds. As a fiduciary, I always serve with my clients best interests, whether a death in the family has occurred or not. It is important to work with a financial advisor who operates under the fiduciary standard of care. 

Follow this link to read the entire article: https://meetfabric.com/blog/what-should-you-do-with-a-life-insurance-benefit

Click here if you would like to learn more about your options and if we can assist you with your wealth management, retirement, and insurance planning.

This website is for informational purposes only and is not intended to be specific advice or recommendations. For specific advice or recommendations you would need to meet directly with one of our advisers.

Term Life Insurance – What is it and how does it work?

Term life insurance Erie CO

Term life insurance is a common coverage option for life insurance protection.  This type of insurance is the least expensive, making it affordable for families and business owners.  Term life insurance provides coverage for a specific number of years.  The number of years will depend on how long the policy owner would like to own the policy.  Term life insurance is available for coverage periods from 1 year up to 35 years.  Best of all, the cost of coverage will remain the same throughout the entire period!  Low cost allows the insured to purchase enough coverage to protect family, assets, and business in the event of death.  As with other types of life insurance coverage, the death benefit is tax free to the beneficiaries.

Term Life Insurance

Term life insurance Erie CO

For young families, this coverage can provide protection to your spouse and children.  For a small business owner, this can provide adequate coverage until the owner decides to exit. Whether they sell the business, retire, insure a key person, fund a buy/sell agreement, or utilized other succession planning.  The insurance policy is active unless a premium payment is missed, causing the policy to lapse. 

With proper planning, this should not be an issue.  At the end of the term period you have options to renew the policy for a specific number of years, convert the policy to a permanent type of coverage, or surrender (drop) the coverage because there is no longer a need.  If you are in the market for term insurance, or would like to meet with a professional advisor to review your options, contact us today!


  • Affordable – low cost for coverage allows for largest amount of protection for smallest premium compared to other types of life insurance
  • Specific Number of Years – Coverage remains in effect for a specific number of years that is decided when the policy is applied for
  • Options –  renew, convert, or surrender the policy at the end of the term period

This website is for informational purposes only and is not intended to be specific advice or recommendations. For specific advice or recommendations you would need to meet directly with one of our advisers.