Make succession planning a painless process

Apr 26, 2013, 13:07 ET from CHS Inc.

ST. PAUL, Minn., April 26, 2013 /PRNewswire/ -- Ask most farmers about their succession plans and you'll likely get a blank stare with, "Yeah, I know I need to get started." Succession planning is a hot topic today and leads the current issue of C – Your CHS Connection, the magazine published by CHS Inc. (NASDAQ: CHSCP) for its grower-owners and other stakeholders. 

Without a doubt, getting started is the biggest hurdle, says Dean Haas, Hortonville, Wis., who in 1996 helped launch transition planning on the family's western Minnesota farm.

"It came out of necessity after my mother died with farmland in her name. That could have led to some major tax ramifications for the family farm," says the former Wisconsin loan officer who has seven siblings, most living near the home farm. "I initiated discussion with Dad and my siblings, and we agreed to hire a professional succession planner to lead us through the process."

Haas admits the process took longer than expected.

"But after a couple meetings, we had goals and a timeline in place, then started working on the legal documents. Beginning to end, it took about a year," he says.

Click here to read the full article on how to develop a successful succession plan, including common transition pitfalls and a by-decade planning calendar. Take a quick poll here and see what others are doing to prepare.

C magazine is published bimonthly – in print and online -- by CHS Inc. a leading global agribusiness owned by farmers, ranchers and cooperatives across the United States. Diversified in energy, grains and foods, CHS is committed to helping its customers, farmer-owners and other stakeholders grow their businesses through its domestic and global operations. CHS, a Fortune 100 company, supplies energy, crop nutrients, grain marketing services, livestock feed, food and food ingredients, along with business solutions including insurance, financial and risk management services. The company operates petroleum refineries/pipelines and manufactures, markets and distributes Cenex® brand refined fuels, lubricants, propane and renewable energy products.