Half the businesses we surveyed are family-owned. About a quarter of these owners expect to retire or sell sometime in the next five years -- but only 13 percent expect the businesses to stay in the family -- with 35 percent having no idea what they will do or expecting to close down. Owners often spend an entire lifetime building their businesses -- but rarely give thought to what will happen when they are ready to retire. As a family-owned business ourselves, we strongly encourage businesses to start planning now -- to minimize taxes and address other financial and emotional considerations.

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