South Dakota: Extension estate planning and farm transition conferences set in four locations |

South Dakota: Extension estate planning and farm transition conferences set in four locations

BROOKINGS, SD – Chamberlain, Parker, Onida, and Milbank will be the sites of a series of South Dakota Cooperative Extension Service training sessions that focus on estate planning.

The conferences also will help people who seek transition of their farm or ranch from one family member to another. Extension staff will help participants develop the tools they need to face estate-planning challenges with less stress.

The sessions include these dates and locations:

• Dec. 28, Jan. 4, 11, and 18 at the AmericInn, 1981 E. King St., Chamberlain.

• Dec. 29, Jan. 5, 12, and 19 at the Community Center, 299 N. Main St., Parker.

•Feb. 10, 17, 24, and March 3 at the Phoenix Center, 117 S. Main, Onida.

• Feb. 16, 23, March 9 and 16 at the Lantern Inn, 1012 S. Dakota St., Milbank.

The training costs $75 per person. Registration is required 10 days prior to the first session. To register, call Extension Marketing/Farm Business Management Educator Heather Gessner at 605-425-2242. Gessner is organizing the conferences and she said each session is filled with important information that can help farm and ranch families address questions they may face as parents or grandparents get older and consider their heritage.

“Each day of these four-session programs is full of tools and how-to information your family can use to create and implement your individualized plan, no matter how big or small your operation,” said Gessner. “Topics for the sessions cover communication styles, assessing the size of your operation, business structures, goals, asset distribution, wills and probate, retirement planning and funding, fair versus equal distribution, tax implications for the operation, life insurance, long-term care insurance, trusts, and other topics as determined by the audiences.”

Gessner said that all family members are encouraged to attend the sessions, and that on- and off-farm heirs also are invited to learn about the tools and participate in the discussions.

“If you are making plans to retire or becoming a partner in the operation, or if you own farm or ranch assets, this program is a great start for you,” Gessner said. “Our goal is to give you the tools to develop your estate plan and the motivation to get started, combined with some gentle nudging that keeps you moving forward with the process.”

Call Gessner at her McCook County Extension office in Salem with questions at 605-425-2242, or e-mail her at


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