Safe Harbor Law


Business Succession Planning

Our attorneys work with owners of closely-held, family-owned businesses to plan for inter-generational transfers of control and transitions of wealth by carefully balancing family dynamics, wealth transfer taxes (estate, gift and generation-skipping), income taxes, and asset liquidity concerns, to achieve successful results for clients. It is quite common for family businesses to fail after succession from the founder to the next generation (and beyond). Statistics suggest that less than a third of closely-held businesses survive the first transition and fewer than one-seventh actually make it to a third generation. Our attorneys seek to avoid these results by guiding clients through the maze of options and issues involved in succession planning to arrive at the most effective solution for these business owners based on their personal, family, tax and financial goals. We usually recommend a team approach to planning, typically involving (in addition to the attorney) the client’s accountant, financial planner, and insurance advisor, among others as necessary.

Succession strategies our attorneys recommend may include any of the following:

  • Buy-Sell Agreements
  • Installment Sales
  • Corporate Recapitalizations
  • Estate Tax Freezes
  • Grantor Retained Annuity Trusts
  • Family Limited Partnerships
  • Private Annuities Sales
  • Sales to Intentionally-Defective Grantor Trusts

“Very satisfied with the services received from Safe Harbor.
I have since recommended them to friends and will continue to do so in the future.”



If you have a family-owned business and have questions or need guidance to prepare for transferring your ownership to family members or simply planning for a future exit, Attorney John D. Shea and his team can help you navigate the “rough seas” of complex legal, family and tax issues.

Our attorneys can answer any preliminary inquiries and set up a meeting to uncover what your needs are.

CALL US TODAY 774-316-4724