Keeping the Family Farm in the Family – Part 2

May 16, 2013

Downey Brand and Westmark Group Program

From 10:00am – 12:00pm

“Planning For Change”

Over time owners of the family farm or ranch will have different interests and objectives.  Some may want to stay in the business, while others may want to leave. Even those who want to stay in the business may have different skills and interests.  In many cases the planning to deal with this change requires considerable foresight.

This series, Keeping the Family Farm in the Family, is designed to address critical issues facing multigenerational family owned businesses.  For example, production agriculture throughout the U.S. is rapidly aging with the average age of a California farmer being 58 years old.

Downey Brand, the largest law firm in the Central Valley which was founded in 1926, and the Westmark Group, a leading strategic consulting firm founded in 1988, have joined to use their collective experience with family owned businesses to develop a framework for best practices, to identify common sources of family business failures, and to share how they may be avoided.  Both firms have extensive experience with family businesses, particularly those in agriculture.

Topics Will Include:

  • Business dynamics and practices that enhance thoughtful change.
  • The role of intra-family transfers in dealing  through structuring or restructuring the family business.
  • The role of the division and separation of businesses, business units or business assets.


Downey Brand LLP is the largest law firm based in the Central Valley, and its attorneys have been advising family owned businesses for more than 85 years. The WestMark Group is a leading strategic agricultural consulting firm that advises many large family owned farming and ranching enterprises in California and a number of other states in the West.