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View Full Version : Solo Operators. If something happened to you...


Turfdoctor1
02-05-2009, 01:58 PM
What would happen to your company?

I don't sit around and worry all day, but it has crossed my mind that I need to have something in place in case something happens to me.

Do any of you have your wives listed as 50% partners, even if they don't work within the company?

Does anyone have a buy out agreement in place with a competitor in case something did happen?

Any other ways of going about making sure your hard work is not just given away if something happens?

If something happened to me right now, CLTG or someone else would just swoop in and take my customers. I want to make sure my family is taken care of in case something were to happen.

larryinalabama
02-05-2009, 02:11 PM
Get life insurance.

Turfdoctor1
02-05-2009, 02:25 PM
Get life insurance.

i've got 500K in life insurance. That's not my point.

larryinalabama
02-05-2009, 02:35 PM
Get a will and leave your business to ypu wife, she would have to hire someone untill she could sell it. If you really worried about it, have her ride with you for a week so she will know where all your accounts are and kinda of know what to do.

RABBITMAN11
02-05-2009, 02:45 PM
That's funny you ask that question. I was just talking to my wife this morning about this. I told her I was going to write a detailed document describing the assets of the business and who to contact in case something happened to me. This is what I think would be important to include, detailed customer list gross sales, net profit, list of assets, Debts, and a contacts that are familiar with business sales. A detailed Instruction how to find all current and past financial information. Also a nice size life insurance policy to protect assets and provide cash security for family. Just some things that I was thinking off the top of my head.

larryinalabama
02-05-2009, 03:06 PM
On the subject of life insurance alaways buy term life insurance, its cheap. Whole life insurance is a pure ripoff

mattfromNY
02-05-2009, 03:21 PM
Not necessarily death, but injury also. I sit here with a broken rib and a torn tendon in my knee. I can still drive to plow snow, but cant get out and shovel, or toss bags of salt, or shovel roofs. I've got a great employee and another part timer that is helping out, but what I would be shut down if I was solo.
Nothing spectacular- broke the rib loading a 72" mower deck into the back of my truck, and blew out my knee kneeling to pull a pin on my plow, knee must have just decided it was time. Getting better every day, but I feel like a welfare mom sitting in front of the tv all day when I should be working!

ted putnam
02-05-2009, 03:47 PM
Not necessarily death, but injury also. I sit here with a broken rib and a torn tendon in my knee. I can still drive to plow snow, but cant get out and shovel, or toss bags of salt, or shovel roofs. I've got a great employee and another part timer that is helping out, but what I would be shut down if I was solo.
Nothing spectacular- broke the rib loading a 72" mower deck into the back of my truck, and blew out my knee kneeling to pull a pin on my plow, knee must have just decided it was time. Getting better every day, but I feel like a welfare mom sitting in front of the tv all day when I should be working!

You brought up a good point about the employees. Yes, Life insurance is great to cover things in case of your death but I feel the only way to keep things "afloat" while sick or injured for an extended period is to have some help...at least a little. I have reached that point, thank goodness and now know that everything would not get completely flushed down the toilet if that situation were to occur. That being said, grow your business to the point that that you need at least a little help. Take good care of your employees and they should take care of you in more ways than one. That is my advice to you. JMO

Turfdoctor1
02-05-2009, 04:18 PM
Get a will and leave your business to ypu wife, she would have to hire someone untill she could sell it. If you really worried about it, have her ride with you for a week so she will know where all your accounts are and kinda of know what to do.

I'm trying to safeguard against my wife having to deal with a mess if something were to happen to me.

Having her responsible for hiring someone, setting up the new business, etc., is the last thing that I would want--if something were to happen.

That's why I'm asking if any of you have something set up that allows the business to pass to someone else while still rewarding your family for your hard work. If not, does anyone have an idea of how to go about just that.

Thank you all for your responses so far. If I had an employee that I could trust to step in and take care of things, that would be ideal. but, I don't. And, if you have multiple employees, this could present a totally different problem.

thanks for the discussion. I'm interested to hear other ideas. We just had our first kid, and you start thinking about things.

Whitey4
02-05-2009, 09:45 PM
Last Augustwhile relaxing in the yard after working all day, one of my 2 mutts was struggling to climb the back porch... she was falling down, and since she is a boxer with a known kidney disease issue (common to the breed) I really thought she was in trouble. I ran over and picked her up. As I did, the sandal I was wearing caught on a step. I came down on my knees full force on the corner of one of the concrete steps, and twisted my ankle so bad it looked like a softball in a matter of 30 seconds. I just sat there for several minutes trying to assess the damage.

I thought I might have shattered a knee cap (didn't) and my knees were bleeding badly. Two swollen knees, an ankle I could barely get my boot over, I worked the next day. Amazing what one can endure when there is no other option.

I don't have a safety net or medical insurance to deal with this sort of thing. Maybe by 2010 I'll be making enough to get better protection, but until then, I have to rely on luck, being safe and toughing it out.

For you guys with families, it's not that simple. Being solo carries risk.

mattfromNY
02-05-2009, 09:56 PM
Last Augustwhile relaxing in the yard after working all day, one of my 2 mutts was struggling to climb the back porch... she was falling down, and since she is a boxer with a known kidney disease issue (common to the breed) I really thought she was in trouble. I ran over and picked her up. As I did, the sandal I was wearing caught on a step. I came down on my knees full force on the corner of one of the concrete steps, and twisted my ankle so bad it looked like a softball in a matter of 30 seconds. I just sat there for several minutes trying to assess the damage.

I thought I might have shattered a knee cap (didn't) and my knees were bleeding badly. Two swollen knees, an ankle I could barely get my boot over, I worked the next day. Amazing what one can endure when there is no other option.

I don't have a safety net or medical insurance to deal with this sort of thing. Maybe by 2010 I'll be making enough to get better protection, but until then, I have to rely on luck, being safe and toughing it out.

For you guys with families, it's not that simple. Being solo carries risk.

I would advise at least looking into family health plus, or some other type of assisted insurance. Even though you are very strong willed, and many of us look at that type of insurance as welfare, it may be worth having in case of an accident. Doesnt mean you ever have to use it just b/c you have it. When I was younger, one accident on my dirtbike (been many since, many, many broken bones- beleive me, I can 'tough it out' like the best of them) cost over $100,000 to repair my leg, ankle and knee, through multiple surgeries and a skin graft. I signed myself out of intensive care once with 4 broken ribs, a dislocated shoulder and internal bleeding because I didn't have health insurance, still had to front a $5k bill out of pocket for the ambulance ride, X-rays and care while I was there. I will never be without at least a minimum health insurance. Especially now that I have a wife and two kids.

ted putnam
02-05-2009, 10:35 PM
4 yrs ago I fell 12 ft off of a ladder onto a loose pile of lumber and twisted my ankle so bad that all I could do was crawl to my truck,climb in and cry...literally. It was so bad 2 workers came out and offered to take me to the hospital. To this day, that ankle looks different than the other and stiffens up and bothers me. I didn't go to the doctor. Not because of insurance. My wife is a teacher and we have good insurance through her work. It was because I knew if I went to the doctor he was probably going to tell me that I should stay off of it 6 weeks or so. I was building/contracting my own house and trying to run my business(solo) at the same time. I was burning the candle at both ends and my family was depending on me. I took 2 days off until the swelling went down enough so that I could cram it back in my rubber boots and "sucked it up" and went on. That is why I made the recommendation I did earlier about growing to the point where you have at least a little help. I wish I would have had it then. JMO

rcreech
02-05-2009, 11:30 PM
Hate to think about it....but should be addressed as it is a VERY important topic!

In the past when my wife and I have talked about this I just told her to sell it and not worry about it!

Probably need to put a little more thought in it then that I guess.

This is a good thread!

mngrassguy
02-05-2009, 11:48 PM
I slipped on a wet deck in my back yard and injured my back/shoulder about 5 years ago. I was lucky enough to have a friend in the business who could step up and run my fert routes as a sub until I recovered. He still does some of my work today.

My wife and I know of 3 companies that keep trying to buy me out every year. I don't think she would have any problems unloading it if need be.

I have enough life insurance that the only thing I have to worry about is her knocking me off. I'm worth WAY more dead than alive. She says she would miss me though.:laugh:

ted putnam
02-06-2009, 12:04 AM
I have enough life insurance that the only thing I have to worry about is her knocking me off. I'm worth WAY more dead than alive. She says she would miss me though.:laugh:

That's what mine says too...but I see the twinkle in her eye when the subject comes up about the 500k life insurance policy. :laugh::laugh:

Whitey4
02-06-2009, 11:27 AM
I would advise at least looking into family health plus, or some other type of assisted insurance. Even though you are very strong willed, and many of us look at that type of insurance as welfare, it may be worth having in case of an accident. Doesnt mean you ever have to use it just b/c you have it. When I was younger, one accident on my dirtbike (been many since, many, many broken bones- beleive me, I can 'tough it out' like the best of them) cost over $100,000 to repair my leg, ankle and knee, through multiple surgeries and a skin graft. I signed myself out of intensive care once with 4 broken ribs, a dislocated shoulder and internal bleeding because I didn't have health insurance, still had to front a $5k bill out of pocket for the ambulance ride, X-rays and care while I was there. I will never be without at least a minimum health insurance. Especially now that I have a wife and two kids.

I will when I can afford it. Right now, keeping a roof over my head, food on the table and gas in my truck comes first. If I can double my business this year, I should be able to get at least some health insurance, but it simply is out of the question for now. I had to spend every dime to get this biz started. Even with a part time job- seasonal - about 20 hours a week in the spring- (I will go from April to July 1 without a single day off) things are still that tight. A pizza is a rare treat.

I knew this would not be easy, but as I told a friend of mine, I will make this work or die trying. :weightlifter:

larryinalabama
02-06-2009, 11:39 AM
Last Augustwhile relaxing in the yard after working all day, one of my 2 mutts was struggling to climb the back porch... she was falling down, and since she is a boxer with a known kidney disease issue (common to the breed) I really thought she was in trouble. I ran over and picked her up. As I did, the sandal I was wearing caught on a step. I came down on my knees full force on the corner of one of the concrete steps, and twisted my ankle so bad it looked like a softball in a matter of 30 seconds. I just sat there for several minutes trying to assess the damage.

I thought I might have shattered a knee cap (didn't) and my knees were bleeding badly. Two swollen knees, an ankle I could barely get my boot over, I worked the next day. Amazing what one can endure when there is no other option.

I don't have a safety net or medical insurance to deal with this sort of thing. Maybe by 2010 I'll be making enough to get better protection, but until then, I have to rely on luck, being safe and toughing it out.

For you guys with families, it's not that simple. Being solo carries risk.


How many Beers did you and Badger have that day?

heritage
02-06-2009, 11:49 AM
When and IF that dreaded day would ever happen, I will do WHATEVER IT TAKES, to see that ALL clients are taken care of.

THEIR best interest is what seperates those that really CARE about their happiness.

They know this....

This is MY Attitude.


Pete

Whitey4
02-06-2009, 12:08 PM
How many Beers did you and Badger have that day?

LOL...God's honest truth was I had showered and JUST popped a brew. I went down that hard because the dog (the other mutt, the boxer) was in my arms and under me. I had to let my knees and elbows take all the weight of the fall or I would have crushed the dog. I couldn't use my hands to break the fall. I also threw those sandals out... they were too big, and tended to get caught on things in front of my toes which was what caused the fall... the front of the sandal got caught on a step. So, it was really kind of my fault... wearing over sized footwear.

BTW, I have a history of bad ankle sprains. I've had 4 casts on the left, two on the right, mostly during my high school years playing 3 sports. I knew it was just a matter of ignoring the pain and working through it. In a few days it was black, blue and yellow from mid calf to my toes. It remained painful for about 9 weeks.

Can you tell I'm bored? I can't wait to start working (and billing) again!

Ric
02-06-2009, 12:17 PM
Yo

At age 68 I have to think about WHAT IF or maybe more like WHEN. Like the Kenny Rodger's song the best that I can hope for is to die in my sleep. In that case My family is grown and no longer needs my support. They have instructions on how to sell my accounts. They will also have a lot of spray equipment to sell off cheap because it isn't real new. Other assets like house etc. will go the normal process.

What my big fear is. To become ill or in need of constant care like a nursing home, That I am totally mentally unprepared for. I have Health care but it would still chew up my assets and end up leaving me totally broke.

humble1
02-06-2009, 05:39 PM
I didnt read all the posts but you can get disability insurance, you pay X amount per month for X in mounthly payments. So you would go to your insurance agent and say I need a disability plan that would pay out (whatever amount you need) each month if something happens to me, what will it cost?

ted putnam
02-06-2009, 09:07 PM
Yo

At age 68 I have to think about WHAT IF or maybe more like WHEN. Like the Kenny Rodger's song the best that I can hope for is to die in my sleep. In that case My family is grown and no longer needs my support. They have instructions on how to sell my accounts. They will also have a lot of spray equipment to sell off cheap because it isn't real new. Other assets like house etc. will go the normal process.

What my big fear is. To become ill or in need of constant care like a nursing home, That I am totally mentally unprepared for. I have Health care but it would still chew up my assets and end up leaving me totally broke.

Ric, I'm no lawyer but wouldn't doing something like setting up a "LivingTrust" alleviate some of those worries for you. My grandfather remarried after my grandmother died and the woman he married was diagnosed with Alzheimers. He had to put her in a nursing home eventually of course but he also had to divorce her to keep long term care from bleeding him dry. That broke his heart and he felt guilty for a long time.