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Webster County to host estate planning workshop

By Staff | May 26, 2014

FORT DODGE – Farmers are unique since there isn’t a distinct moment when they retire as someone in a regular wage-earning.

Rather, farm families often need to think about how to transition the farm business to the next generation during one’s lifetime, as well as having an estate plan in place.

“Talking about transitions and estate planning is difficult for most people – and especially for farm families,” said Melissa O’Rourke, an Iowa State University farm and agribusiness management specialist in northwest Iowa, “and actual implementation of a transition plan can be even harder.”

That’s why ISU Extension offers an “Evaluating Your Estate Plan” workshop to answer transition and estate planning questions. The one-day workshop will be held from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. on June 24 at the ISU Webster County Extension and Outreach office in Fort Dodge.

Advance registration is required and space is limited.

The Evaluating Your Estate Plan workshop costs $50 per person and includes lunch and materials.

To pre-register call the Webster County Extension office at (515) 576-2119.

“Families and individuals should plan adequately to protect assets that they have built over a lifetime of hard work,” said O’Rourke, one of the speakers at the event. O’Rourke is an attorney experienced in agricultural law and estate planning.

Kelvin Leibold, also an ISU farm and agribusiness management specialist, will be the other featured speaker at the workshop.

“There are options particularly suited for consideration by farm families,” Leibold said, “different ways to transition farm management and assets.

“This program helps farm families plan for the future.”

The workshop will discuss the language of estate planning, gift, estate and inheritance taxes, calculating retirement costs, and other areas vital to creating a good estate plan.

“We’re really excited about this workshop because it doesn’t just stop at providing valuable information for anyone concerned about estate and transition plans,” O’Rourke said. “Everyone will participate in a hands-on analysis and discussion of case studies that will help folks apply the information to their own situations.”

Anyone who is unsure of how to build a transition plan or what options are best for their farm operation and family should attend this workshop, she said.

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