Tax and Estate Planning for Closely Held Businesses

Tailored specifically for closely held businesses in Chicago and nationwide, you can trust our comprehensive tax and estate planning services to help you maximize your financial potential. Susan Lewis CPA can help protect your assets, minimize tax liabilities, and secure your business's future.

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We service 1,000+ businesses and 3,000+ individual clients, many of them located nationwide.
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38 Years of Experience
Since 1986, we’ve provided comprehensive tax and accounting solutions for individuals and businesses.
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Serving 52 States
With our technology stack, we provide remote accounting services for you and your business, regardless the location.

Common Challenges of Closely Held Businesses

It's not uncommon for closely held businesses to encounter certain challenges as a result of their ownership structure and the nature of operations. Some common challenges include:

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  • Limited Access to Capital

    Closely held businesses may experience issues accessing external funding compared to publicly traded companies, which can impact growth opportunities.

  • Family Dynamics

    Many closely held businesses are family-owned, which can potentially lead to conflicts and complexities in decision-making and succession planning.

  • Succession Planning

    Planning for leadership transitions within a closely held business can be complex.

  • Financial Management

    Managing finances, cash flow, and tax planning can be problematic, especially for smaller closely held businesses without dedicated financial teams.

  • Limited Resources

    Smaller closely held businesses may have limited resources to invest in technology, marketing, or professional services such as accounting.

  • Risk Management

    Addressing risks and implementing effective risk management strategies can be vital for closely held businesses.

  • Navigating Regulations

    Some businesses struggle with the complexity of various regulatory requirements.

Our CPA Services

Our dedicated CPA services cater to the unique needs of closely held businesses. From tax planning and financial management to closely held business succession planning, we offer tailored solutions for long-term success.

Tax Planning and Preparation

Our expert CPAs provide comprehensive tax planning and preparation services tailored to closely held businesses, including planning for estate taxes. We ensure compliance with tax regulations while maximizing deductions to minimize tax liabilities.

Bookkeeping and Accounting Services

Accurate financial records are key for closely held businesses. Our professional bookkeeping and accounting services help you maintain organized financial data for informed decision-making and financial stability.

Succession Planning and Exit Strategies

A succession plan is critical for closely held businesses. We assist with succession planning, ensuring a smooth transition of ownership and management to safeguard your business's long-term success.

Estate and Trust Planning

Protect your assets and secure your family's financial future with our estate and trust planning services. We create personalized strategies to preserve wealth and minimize tax consequences for closely held businesses.

Financial Planning and Wealth Management for Business Owners

Our financial planning and wealth management services are designed to help business owners achieve their financial goals. We offer strategic advice and investment management for long-term prosperity.

Business Restructuring and Reorganization

Facing challenges or seeking growth opportunities? Our experts guide closely held businesses through strategic restructuring and reorganization, ensuring efficient operations and improved financial performance.

Expert Tax and Estate Planning

Need guidance with Tax and Estate Planning for Closely Held Businesses? Trust us to help you maximize your potential and secure a prosperous future. Don't wait, start planning now!

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Estate Planning for Closely Held Business Owners

As a business owner, your closely held business is a significant asset and primary source of income. Passing it to younger generations and securing the livelihood of family members require careful tax and non-tax planning. Deliberate consideration of both aspects is crucial to unlocking value, ensuring seamless succession, and maximizing benefits for your business and family's future.

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  • Creating Buy-Sell Agreements

    1. Crucial estate planning tool for closely held business owners.
    2. Establish pre-determined plans for business interest transfer in specific situations.
    3. Prevent disputes among co-owners or beneficiaries.
    4. Agree on fair value and terms for ownership interest transfer.
    5. Provides a ready market for shares and ensures business continuity.
    6. Offers certainty about the business's future and protection for all owners.
    7. Provides liquidity for departing owners or their families.

  • Lifetime Transfers of Business Interests

    1. Transfer ownership of closely held business during the owner's lifetime.
    2. Proactively plan for the future and efficiently manage estate assets.
    3. Gifting shares to family members or creating trusts for asset management.
    4. An effective way to reduce estate tax liability and ensure a smooth business transition.
    5. Owners can mentor successors and ensure the business's legacy.
    6. Offers financial security for the owner's family.
    7. Creates opportunities for tax savings through careful planning.

  • Family Limited Partnerships (FLPs) and Limited Liability Companies (LLCs)

    FLPs and LLCs are effective estate planning devices for closely held business owners. They allow for wealth transfer to younger generations while maintaining control and protecting assets. Here's how they work:

    1. Formation: FLPs consist of a general partner and limited partners, with the business owner transferring assets to the FLP.
    2. Control: The senior generation family member controls the general partner, managing the limited partnership.
    3. Asset Protection: The senior family members are insulated from personal liability, protecting their assets.
    4. Transfer Restrictions: The limited partnership interests are restricted from transfer and safeguard against creditors.
    5. Discounts: When gifting limited partnership interests, substantial discounts can be applied to reduce gift tax liability.
    6. Real Estate Ownership: Real estate owned by the business owner can be placed into an LLC to further facilitate the wealth transfer.
    7. Non-Voting Interests: Senior family members can gift non-voting and non-management interests to younger generations to receive discounts for gift tax purposes while maintaining control of the entity.

    Both FLPs and LLCs offer valuable benefits in estate planning and ensure the smooth transfer of wealth and business interests to future generations.

Why Choose Susan Lewis CPA?

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Susan Lewis CPA specializes in closely held businesses, providing tailored financial solutions.
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Tax Optimization

We optimize tax strategies to maximize savings for your business.
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Succession Planning

Our expertise ensures a smooth transition for your business to the next generation.
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Asset Protection

We help protect your assets and preserve wealth for future generations.

Client Reviews

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Very pleased with the service Susan Lewis office provides!! This is my fifth year with them as a client.
Albert Ridgeway
Susan S. Lewis LTD and her entire staff has always guided me with their extensive knowledge and confidence. As a result I don’t worry about taxes, investments, etc. Love working with them.
Mary Ann Poulos
Professional, expert services from people who care about their clients.
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  • What is a closely held business?

    A closely held business is a privately owned company with a limited number of shareholders or owners. These businesses are typically not publicly traded on stock exchanges.

  • How is a closely held business different from a publicly traded company?

    Unlike publicly traded companies, closely held businesses have a small number of shareholders, often consisting of family members, founders, or a few investors. They're not required to disclose financial information to the public.

  • What deductions are available for closely held businesses?

    These businesses may be eligible for various tax deductions, such as business expenses, qualified retirement contributions, charitable contributions, and deductions related to employee benefits and healthcare costs. Proper tax planning can maximize deductions and reduce tax liabilities.

Ready to Start?

Ready to take better control of your closely held business finances? Trust one of Chicago's top financial planning firms. Contact Susan Lewis CPA now to explore our expert services.

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