September – Start of a new year?

September, at times, feels like a new year starting as summer vacations become wonderful memories, kids are back to school and we return to our routines at work and at home.  As with any new year we review what went well and not so well in the past year and turn our focus to the future.  This is a perfect time to assess whether your financial plans are on track.  Below are some items that you may consider looking into while reflecting on life changes and changes in your business over the past year:

  1. Your personal and business goals – Are you on track to where you thought you would be at this point in time? Have you made progress? Have your goals changed?
  2. Your key financial documents such as wills and powers of attorneys – Are they stored in a safe place and easy to access? Are they up to date? Organized?
  3. Your assets – Do you have documents and strategies in place to protect your assets? Do they need to be updated?  Are your wills setup to ensure assets are transferred in the most tax effective manner?
  4. Income Tax – Do you have strategies in place to pay the least amount of tax? There is always income tax to consider and the tax legislation can be very complicated.  There are a number of ways to minimize the tax you pay over your lifetime.
  5. Insurance – Do you have enough insurance in place to support your family should the unexpected happen?
  6. Estate Plan –Is it time to review your estate plan? Estate plans can be as simple as drafting a will to complex estate plans that include an estate freeze. There are many things to consider such as preserving the family wealth, providing for a spouse and children, transferring the reins of the family business, funding education for children and grandchildren and perhaps, leaving a legacy to a charitable cause.
  7. Succession plan for your business – Have you considered succession planning? There are a number of things to consider such as whether you will sell to family, employees or a third party, will you stay on for a year or two afterwards, the tax implications of passing your business to a family member, financing the succession plan, etc.

Yes, there are a lot of items to consider when reviewing your financial affairs and they are even more complicated when you own a business.  You will have a lot of questions and concerns.  With over 25 years of experience working with owner/managers, their legal counsel and their financial advisors, we have dealt with many of these questions and have the expertise to help you set up or review your existing plans.  We can help, just give us a call and set up an appointment.