Why switch off the lights?
Why run a webinar on closing down an architecural practice? Isn't that just too depressing? Well, no. The ACA is there for all stages of running a practice – setting up, expanding, merging and, when the time comes, closing down. Michael Neustein explains why we should consider the issues involved in shutting down just as carefully as starting up.
"Switch Off the Lights", the forthcoming ACA webinars, are designed to tackle retirement from practice issues for small or single-person practices. I conceived the webinars as a retirement age, but not yet retiring, architect, who is increasingly aware of the challenges posed by this phase of a career.
These webinars will provide important legal, accounting, insurance and practice information to those who have no viable succession plan.
If, like many of the baby boomers, you have reached or are about to reach retirement, you will likely be facing many questions – How does one provide for possible PI claims from projects? What are the legal and accounting rules for winding up companies or partnerships? and Can one just "give" a practice away to a third party? The first webinar will address all of these questions
The second of the two webinars, will cover your obligations to maintain records, what records may be of interest to our public institutions (museums, libraries), and how to get tax deductions for gifts of artworks or books, etc to public institutions.
Webinar participants may also wish to consider the creation of a network of small firms which are in the transition to retirement and which may provide mutual support and advice. While there is no market place for small practices, some participants may wish to transfer or share projects in order to meet obligations to clients, or to support coming generations of architectural practitioners.
Michael Neustein is a director of Neustein Urban and an ACA – NSW committee member.