Estate Planning for the Pharmacy Owner

Estate Planning is a subject matter many individuals, in all kinds of organizations, avoid. For the pharmacy proprietor who operates the store six days a week, takes few vacations, fills prescriptions throughout the day, then needs to mop the floor as well as do the bookkeeping in the evening, there normally isn’t much time to think about extra tasks such as estate planning. Nevertheless, recognizing that there will ultimately be a time the business will be transferred, it is crucial for the pharmacy owner to think about an appropriate succession strategy.

Estate plans might include Buy-Sell Agreements, Trusts, Life Insurance, Wills, Living Wills, Business Valuations, Power of Attorney, Medical Power of Attorney, Charitable Remainder Trusts, as well as various other legal files and records. All facets of the estate plan preparation are to give family/partners/heirs the pharmacy owner’s final directives.

When there are non-family partners in the pharmacy business, it is vital that estate planning preparation include a Buy-Sell Agreement. Buy-sell Agreements control the procedures of transferring the business between partners. The contract might additionally be referred to as a Partner Buyout Agreement, or the Company’s Will.

In order to help safeguard the family members, in case of a partner’s fatality, the Buy-Sell Agreement might be funded with a life insurance policy.

Creating an Estate Plan      

When creating an estate plan, the pharmacy’s valuation need to be calculated by a third party that has experience in the pharmacy sector, completes many pharmacy valuations annually, as well as has existing market sector data as a estate planning, valuations, pharmacy, selling, for the valuation conclusions. Establishing the worth of a pharmacy by utilizing basic bookkeeping approaches, multipliers, or working with a valuation firm inexperienced with drug store valuations will not supply an adequate valuation of the business.


Estate planning preparation makes it possible for a pharmacy owner to prepare for the future transfer of the business. The plan will certainly be developed with the objectives to lessen the unpredictabilities, aid in conveying the business, decrease expenditures, as well as minimize tax obligations.

Creating a succession strategy for the business will be time consuming. Nevertheless, done properly it will certainly enable the business to efficiently be transferred when the time comes.

Estate Planning – A Work in Progress

Pharmacy owners and their families need to realize, an estate plan is not a “do it once and be done” process. Modifying and amending the estate plan is highly suggested as circumstances change with government regulations, state laws, Board of Pharmacy policies, PBM Contracts, business financial issues, as well as individual circumstances. Estate Planning is always a work in progress.

Understand that when the proprietor is the only pharmacist, and the proprietor passes away, the customer prescriptions still need to be filled by a licensed pharmacist. If there is not a substitute pharmacist readily available, according to regulations the customer files must be transferred to another pharmacy. Because of this critical issue, the net worth of the business could dramatically decrease in a couple of days after the death of the proprietor. A well thought out estate plan should consider this vital issue.

Every year there are pharmacy owners who pass away without having an estate plan in place. This results in their families being left with questions, concerns, as well as potentially being left with an asset with little worth.

Recognizing that there will eventually be a transfer of the business it is very important for the pharmacy owner, partners, and families to think about an appropriate succession strategy for the pharmacy business.

Pharmacy Owner’s – Estate Planning Tips

1. Talk with the business owner’s spouse, children, as well as various other family members throughout the estate planning process. This is vital if there are family members that assist in the operation of the business.

2. Establish clear instructions to prevent disagreements.

3. Get professional tax guidance to reduce tax liabilities.

4. When going the self-help route, there are sources readily available from the internet as well as books and publications. However, it is recommended to have a paid specialist evaluate the finished documents, so when the time comes, the final instructions can be legitimately abided by.

5. When the family drug store is the single form of income for some family members, it ends up being a lot more critical to have a quality succession plan in place.