Estate Planners


  • Do you know what estate planning can accomplish? 
  • Do you have a set of objectives for your own estate plan?
  • Have you discussed with your spouse a plan for continued management of the family’s timberland?
  • Do you understand the different ways to hold timber property in your estate and the advantages/disadvantages of each?

The high cost of dying unprepared includes unexpected heirs, unexpected real estate values, burden of death taxes and administrative expenses, loss of leadership and income, and the need to liquidate assets.
Forestland ownership can create unique estate planning problems:

  1. Land and timber assets are not liquid
  2. Timber prices can be very volatile
  3. Forestland investments can produce low and irregular income
  4. Federal tax laws complicate the inter-generational transfer of timber property and favor liquidation of growing stock
  5. Only moderately-sized timberland holdings (approximately 1,000 acres and larger) can produce an even flow of timber and other outputs to produce economies of scale for management, harvesting, and reforestation.

The estate planning team for forest landowners should include:

  • Attorney
  • CPA
  • Bank Trust Officer
  • Chartered Life Underwriter (CLU)
  • Forester

Mellette Forestry Group’s input into the planning process can be very important in the estate planning process.  We can prepare a forest management plan that includes projected schedules of timber revenues, capital expenditures, and management expenses.  Our knowledge of timber tax provisions, timberland valuation, timber markets, and good forest management practices can help the forest landowner accomplish their estate planning goals.