Family forest owners should utilize estate planning to pass land to next generation

Family Ties to the Land workshop discusses estate planning to pass land to next generation

Do you own forest land and want to keep that forest legacy for future generations? Do you want to discuss your wishes for the future of your land with family, but don’t know how to start the conversation? Are you confused about current estate planning laws? The upcoming Family Ties to the Land workshop will help families discuss estate planning to pass land to next generation. During the workshop, families will learn to:

  • Experience the Family Ties to the Land succession planning workshop developed by a nationally prominent estate planning professional and National Tree Farm leader.
  • Discover valuable new ways for you to plan for the future of your land.
  • Get straightforward tools, tips and information to get started in your succession and estate planning as it relates to your forest or agricultural property.  

By most estimates, there are currently more than 440,000 family forest landowners in Michigan. Most of these landowners own their land for similar reasons, to enjoy nature and a wide range of recreational opportunities. Although many consider this land as a part of their family legacy, they may not have shared this special attachment with their kids. When the time comes for the forest land to pass on to the next generation they may be faced with a variety of challenges, from unexpected tax burdens to a general lack of understanding about what their parents’ desires were for the land. Many times, this lack of succession planning leads to parcelization, outright sale of this land, as well as family conflicts.

This upcoming workshop consists of DVD-based video clips that are coupled with interactive discussion and planning activities. The workshop will also offer tools and tips on how to start discussing this difficult subject with other family members. Resource materials as well as a panel of local professionals will offer general advice on estate planning.

Landowners have found that they need to have knowledge of a broad spectrum of areas that include interpersonal family concerns, and communication, legal and regulatory issues.  Attendance at this program is a good way for you and your family to jump-start this often difficult, and sometimes complex, planning process.

This two-session Family Ties to the Land workshop will be held at Boardman River Nature Center on Thursday, October 27, 2011 and Thursday, November 3, 2011 from 6:30 9:30 p.m. The registration fee of $50 covers the cost of session’s activities, a workbook, handouts and light refreshments. Families are encouraged to attend together. Additional family members beyond the first couple to register are $10 per person. Early-Bird registration ends Friday, October 21; after that date registration is $55 for first family member (couple) and $15 for any additional family members.)

Registration information is available through the Roscommon County Extension Office. Registration flyers and forms can be mailed, Faxed or emailed to those interested in participating. For more information, contact Russell P. Kidd, MSU Extension, at 989-275-5043 or .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address).     


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