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Farm succession advisors, a critical part of a farm family’s advisory team

Farm succession planning is a critical issue for thousands of farm families. They need assistance from qualified and knowledgeable professionals such as attorneys, financial experts, educators, consultants, mediators, and farm organization staff to help them complete succession plans.

Research shows most farmers want help to pass on their farms and exit securely from active farming. Attorneys and other farm succession advisors play an indispensable role on a farmer’s succession planning team. Many farms will cease to operate if farmers do not receive adequate information and support, further reducing opportunities for next-generation farmers to acquire farmland or viable farm businesses.

Attorneys and other service providers who include farm succession planning in their professional portfolio, and who make a point of learning the particulars, are highly sought after throughout New England.

A new resource, Farm Succession Advising: Attorney Training Compendium, drawn from LFG’s 2017 farm succession professional training, provides solid legal background material and technical tools for attorneys – and other farm succession advisors – who work with farmer clients on their succession plans.

Professionals can also extend their services and expertise to farmers by listing themselves at the Farm Transfer Network of New England website, where they can also find additional resources for working with farmers.

Farmers need skilled and knowledgeable professionals such as attorneys, financial experts, educators, consultants, mediators, conservation, farm link and farm organization staff, and lenders to help them complete succession plans,” explained Shemariah.

A new, two-year professional development grant from Northeast Sustainable Agriculture Research and Education (NE SARE) will allow us to organize, train and network 80 service providers to deliver effective succession planning support to approximately 320 transitioning farmers in New England. Stay tuned for more training opportunities!

Funding is also provided by the Land Access Project, Phase 3 (LAP3) that is supported by a grant from the USDA/NIFA Beginning Farmer and Rancher Development Program (NIFA # 2018-70017-28531).

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