Friday, May 30, 2014
Malcolm Glazer, owner of Buccaneers and Manchester United, passed away at age 85 on Wednesday. Careful succession planning by the Buccaneers ensures ownership of the team will remain within the Glazer family for generations to come, although it is unclear who will be controlling what.
If history has proven anything, transfer of wealth among sports magnates is never simple. When Washington Redskins owner Jack Cooke died, he left ten percent of his estate to his son, stipulating the club be sold with the proceeds being used to start a foundation. Generally, the surviving spouse inherits the bulk of an estate to avoid federal taxes imposed when assets are passed on to the next generation. It is usually not until the death of the remaining spouse that any estate issues surface.
With soaring media deals and a dramatic increase in the value of sports teams, some owners have created complex succession plans, allowing them to shield their heirs from hefty estate tax bills that could force them to sell. “Typically there are trust agreements drafted and tweaked over time that will dictate how this gets passed on…They key is the work done prior to his death.”
See Jeff Harrington, Careful Estate Planning Likely Ensures Tampa Bay Bucs Stay With Glazer Family, Tampa Bay Times, May 28, 2014.
Special thanks to Jim Hillhouse (Professional Legal Marketing (PLM, Inc.)) for bringing this article to my attention.