North Carolina Dental Practice Planning Attorneys
When you are beginning a dental practice plan, purchasing a dental practice, or altering an existing one, there are numerous considerations, concerns, and questions to consider. It can be overwhelming, especially for a professional who already has a demanding schedule. At NC Planning, we want to help ease the burden by assisting you in assembling a well-designed, individualized plan for your business. Our attorneys have experience providing North Carolina Dental Practice Planning advice and strategic, actionable guidance to all types of business and medical professionals. Your successes and your future are important to us, and we want to help you execute the goals you have and protect the accomplishments you’ve worked for, and we have real, concrete plans to help do just that.
- Practice management: running an efficient and successful dental practice is difficult, necessitating a fair amount of business acumen and experience. As the manager of your dental practice, you are in charge of your business finances, marketing, employee relations, and administration. Implementing effective practice management strategies will help you communicate more clearly and accurately with patients, skillfully handle company finances to optimize earnings, and expertly lead your team. Our team of North Carolina dental practice attorneys works with owners of dental practices to establish policies and processes to increase the efficiency of their business operations.
- Buying or selling a practice: Acquiring an existing practice can be a major step in a business’s growth, allowing the company to expand into new markets, grow its client base, and increase revenue. On the other hand, selling a practice is often an important step forward for a current business owner, freeing their time and financial resources for new opportunities. Regardless of whether you are buying or selling a practice, acquisition transactions are complex and must be handled with care to avoid costly mistakes. Even the slightest error can result in serious financial consequences or legal disputes. As dental practice attorneys, we help our clients negotiate agreements, navigate tax liabilities, and consolidate the excess capacity to ensure a smooth transition. Through our tailored guidance, we help business owners avoid these pitfalls.
- Tax planning: Tax considerations are a key issue for many dental practice owners. The more successful your business becomes, the more pressing tax issues become. There are a variety of opportunities available to dental practice owners to reduce the amount they pay in taxes, but utilizing these opportunities requires careful and strategic planning. Through our tax planning services, we work with dental practice owners to identify strategies to minimize their tax burden and protect their businesses from mistakes that could negatively impact their bottom line.
- Succession planning: As North Carolina dental practice attorneys, we have experience creating effective succession plans for a variety of professionals in the dental industry. There are unique concerns associated with planning for the succession of a dental practice, and we address these issues through our tailored services. By creating a succession plan for your practice, you can successfully reduce the likelihood of business disruptions and ensure that any unexpected resignations from the company are handled with grace.
Asset Protection Plans for Dental Professionals
Dentists work many years to pay off their student loans and start accumulating wealth. Many of our dental clients have concerns about malpractice claims or other lawsuits being asserted against them and the potential of losing what they have worked so hard for during their careers.
At NC Planning, one of our common focuses for dental clients is asset protection. While every client’s situation is unique, there are several common strategies that may be appropriate to implement for asset protection when it comes to dental professionals.
We evaluate our client’s non-exempt assets which are subject to creditor claims and determine whether it is appropriate to convert any of those non-exempt assets into assets that are exempt from creditor claims. One component evaluated under this strategy is the ownership of a home.
In North Carolina, when a piece of property is held by a married couple jointly with rights of survivorship, it is held as “tenants by the entirety.” If the property is held as tenants by the entirety, there are additional protections that dictate that creditors of one spouse may not take the property to satisfy the debt of just that one spouse. As such, for your homestead, we only need to worry about creditors that may have a claim against both of you jointly. For example, if both parties individually are co-guarantors on a loan or mortgage.
Many types of insurance are exempt from creditors’ claims. As such, dental professionals often elect to purchase insurance that favors loved ones and family members to ensure that individuals left behind are well taken care of after the passing of the dental professional. Our firm has worked with individual practice owners to maximize the asset protection of insurance companies. This is a strategized approach that can also have extensive tax benefits.
Investing in Your Children’s Future
There are also certain types of qualified retirement accounts that are exempt from creditor claims. Significant tax benefits can arise with this strategy. 529 Plans, a type of investment plan focused on tuition, are also commonly used as a tool to ensure wealth will be passed on to loved ones while avoiding creditor claims.
We closely evaluate the structure of our client’s overall plan and determine whether it is advantageous to add additional business entities or trusts to their existing plans. Creating these separate entities can allow for a separation of certain personal assets from business assets to allow for greater limited liability protection.
The Unfortunate, But Preventable, Truth of Raleigh Dental Practice Planning
Commonly, if company assets are insufficient to satisfy potential claims of creditors, which is often the case in a lawsuit, a claimant’s attorney will try to access the personal assets of the business owner. This is just a reality to be aware of, as well as another important reason to add supplementary protection for your personal assets. Not every instance in life is preventable, but your dental practice, your livelihood, and your personal property can be made more secure by seeking guidance from a knowledgeable team.
How to Choose the Right Dental Practice Attorney for Your North Carolina Practice
There are several factors that go into choosing the right dental practice attorney for your practice. The legal counsel you select has the power to influence the growth potential and overall success of your business. For this reason, it is important to make this decision carefully and vet potential attorneys before committing to their services.
Some business owners assume that legal counsel is only necessary for dire circumstances. This is a harmful misconception. Any situation involving your legal rights and responsibilities is a valid reason for seeking legal assistance. Examples of such situations may include:
- Purchasing, selling, or forming a business
- Navigating real estate transactions or commercial lease agreements
- Estate planning and succession planning
- Drafting and/or negotiating contracts
- Interacting with governmental agencies for regulatory compliance
- Labor and employment agreements
- Facing a lawsuit
Once you identify your reason for hiring an attorney, consider searching for attorneys in your specific city or area. Some attorneys provide general counsel, while others focus specifically on business law and corporate matters. After narrowing down your list of business attorneys, consider scheduling consultations to open the conversation with these lawyers. The initial consultation is the time to assess whether this North Carolina professional practice attorney understands your vision and has the skill and experience necessary to implement strategies to achieve your goals. Enter your consultation with pointed questions to help gauge whether they are a good fit for your practice. The following questions can be helpful for this purpose:
- Do you have experience working with owners of dental practices?
- How long have you been practicing business planning law?
- What is your fee structure?
- How can I expect to communicate with you?
- Who will be primarily handling issues related to my business?
- Do you anticipate any pitfalls related to the formation, management, or operation of my practice?
- Does your firm have an in-house CPA to handle complex tax issues?
Above all, it is important that you feel comfortable speaking with your attorney and have confidence in their legal guidance. You will likely be working with this legal professional for an extended period of time, making it important to establish a strong rapport and working relationship with them.
Let NC Planning Help Provide Peace of Mind
If you have any concerns regarding potential liabilities to which you may be exposed, then our team of dental attorneys at NC Planning would be happy to meet with you to discuss the strategies above, and many others, even further. Careful planning and preparedness can go a long way to ensuring a safer future for your business. We develop an individualized asset protection plan for each of our clients and are motivated and determined to find a game-plan that is appropriate for you. Please call us today at (919) 568-3681, and let us help you, your family, and your business.