The topic of family businesses has certainly been in the spotlight these days, as politicos debate whether President Donald J. Trump has actually severed ties to his family businesses and the roles his children will play in running those businesses during his presidency. We’ve learned that it’s important to have structures in place so that things can continue to run smoothly if the founder or owner of the business retires, dies or is elected president. As Patricia M. Angus notes in her article, “Governance for Business-Owning Families: Part I,” p. 57, one of the most important challenges is to have a governance system in place. Properly structuring a family business is also a key to its success. And, in “The Role of the Family Office in Business Succession,” p. 44, David T. Leibell discusses how the family office structure plays a crucial role in coordinating and facilitating the family business succession process.
Our issue this month includes our Art, Auctions & Antiques special report. It covers a variety of art-related topics, including heightened scrutiny of art transactions in terms of state tax law enforcement, handling an art portfolio for growth, the newly enacted Holocaust Expropriated Art Recovery Act of 2016 and best practices to follow when loaning art to museums.
Finally, I’d like to welcome three new editorial advisory board members. Joining our Insurance Committee is Jon B. Mendelsohn, CEO of the Ashar Group, LLC in Orlando, Fla. He’s written articles for Trusts & Estates on rethinking life insurance valuations for seniors and using life settlements to pay for long-term care. Also joining that Committee is Robert W. Finnegan, senior vice president at Highland Capital Brokerage in Farmington, Conn. Joining the Estate Planning & Taxation Committee is Diana S.C. Zeydel, global chair, Trusts & Estates/Wealth Management at Greenberg Traurig, LLP in Miami. We look forward to working with all of them on our board.