We sometimes tend to think of upstarts and entrepreneurialism as a young person’s game. Not so! The truth is that American businesses span the whole age spectrum, and the aging-and-elderly populations make up a bigger portion than you might think.
The U.S. Census Bureau recently released its Business Dynamic Statistics from 2014, and the results are surprising:
- 16% of small business owners are under the age of 35
- 33% are ages 35-49
- 51% are ages 50-88!
Additionally, the Census found that the average age of a first-time business founder is 39. Similarly, the report shows that most of America’s small businesses have already been around for decades, and their owners are much older now.
That tells us a few things. For one, as I often mention, so-called “old age” isn’t always the slow-paced lifestyle it’s made out to be. It isn’t uncommon for someone in their sixties, seventies, or even eighties to be involved in the day-to-day operations of the business world.
The study also demonstrates that a great many Americans need to consider their small businesses as part of an estate plan. Someone will need to take over those businesses — or at the very least, manage their affairs — in the event of unexpected death. Practically speaking, that requires a lot more than simply transferring ownership interest to somebody else in a will.
If you own a business in Massachusetts and aren’t sure whether your existing estate plan adequately safeguards your company against worst-case scenarios, I’d be happy to talk with you about options for shoring up those plans.
Small businesses and old age go hand in hand. Together, we can make sure yours will stay in good hands too.