This is the inaugural podcast appearance of the one and only Dr. Shannon Ferrell. If you know Shannon, you love him. He is one of the best, most popular professors at Oklahoma State University and an extremely in-demand speaker on agricultural law issues across the nation. We are honored to be his first podcast appearance!
Shannon grew up on his family farm at Leedy, Oklahoma and obtained his bachelor’s and master’s degrees in Agricultural Economics at Oklahoma State University and his law degree at Oklahoma City University School of Law. After several years in private practice, he landed his dream job teaching agricultural law at Oklahoma State University.
Today, we are talking about a topic near and dear to both Shannon’s heart and my own, and that is transition planning for farm and ranch families. As Shannon explains, “transition planning” includes both an estate plan to pass on personal assets at death and a succession plan to transfer control and ownership of a family business. There is no better time than today to start discussing these issues and begin putting a plan together.
Shannon and I walk through a 5 step plan to crafting a successful transition plan:
- Determine where your farm and ranch is now.
- Start communicating with stakeholders.
- Develop a business succession plan.
- Develop an estate plan.
- Deploy the transition plan, evaluate, revise.
Within this discussion, we talk estate taxes, the difference between equal and equitable, organ donation decisions, wills versus trusts, joint bank account ownership, evaluating skills and abilities of the next generation, and more!
On the question of a law Shannon would like to see changed, he went to his other favorite topic, wind leasing. As he explains, in Oklahoma, there is a law that requires wind rights to be tied to the surface and cannot be severed. Shannon says he would like to see minerals tied back to the surface as well so that the surface owner who bears the negatives from oil and gas development would be the person getting the royalty check.
Finally, Shannon is quite a foodie, so when he makes a restaurant recommendation, I always listen. He goes with Biscuit Love in Nashville, TN. Order a Bonut–they fry biscuit dough into a donut. Closer to home, in Stillwater, Oklahoma, he recommends Granny’s on Main Street. It is described as the place where two guys would engage in a cattle transaction and get a french fried cinnamon roll.