From the water, photo of a cottage on the lake surrounded by trees.

Ten Reasons Why You May Want to Consider a Family Cottage Succession Plan

The goal of cottage succession planning is to set up legal ground rules that provide the best chance to keep a cottage in the family for future generations. A cottage plan usually addresses concerns through the creative use of a limited liability company (LLC), or a trust (typically used for more favorable treatment associated with the uncapping of taxable value), to own the property. Here are ten reasons why you and/or your family may want to consider a family cottage succession plan.

    1. Prevent a joint owner from forcing the sale of the cottage through an action for partition.
    2. An alternative to allowing common law rules dictate how the cottage operates.
    3. Prevent transfer of an interest in the cottage outside the family.
    4. Protect owners from creditor claims.
    5. Establish a framework for making decisions affecting the cottage.
    6. Provide sanctions for nonpayment of cottage expenses.
    7. A vehicle for an “endowment” (money set aside to fund cottage expenses).
    8. To require mediation or arbitration of family disputes.
    9. Allocate control of the cottage between or among generations of owners.
    10. May help delay (or avoid) the uncapping of Michigan property taxes.

These are the basics, but just as each family is different, each agreement can be tailored to fit specific needs.

Mark E. Kellogg’s breadth of knowledge and experience gives his clients unique insight into the special considerations associated with the cottage law practice. If you have any questions, you can reach out to Mark at or (517) 377.0890 for assistance.