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For Estate Planning, Estate Administration And Disputes

3 considerations for special needs trusts

On Behalf of | Mar 25, 2024 | Estate Planning |

Individuals with special needs children face unique estate planning challenges. It is essential to ensure that your child’s future is secure and that they will continue to receive the care and support they need, even after you are gone.

There are several considerations to keep in mind when creating an estate plan if you have a special needs child.

1. Protect your child’s eligibility for government benefits

Many individuals with special needs rely on government benefits, such as Supplemental Security Income and Medicaid, to cover their living expenses and healthcare costs. However, if your child inherits assets directly, they may become ineligible for these valuable benefits.

To prevent this, consider setting up a Special Needs Trust. The trust allows you to provide for your child’s needs without jeopardizing their eligibility for government assistance.

2. Choose the right trustee

The trustee is responsible for managing the trust assets and meeting your child’s needs. Consider appointing someone who is financially savvy, trustworthy and familiar with your child’s unique requirements. It is also a good idea to name a successor trustee in case your primary choice is unable to fulfill their duties.

3. Plan for your child’s long-term care

As a parent of a special needs child, you want to ensure that they will receive the best possible care throughout their life. When creating your estate plan, consider your child’s long-term care needs.

This may include identifying potential caregivers, such as family members or professional care providers, and ensuring that there are sufficient funds available to cover their expenses. You may also want to create a Letter of Intent, which provides detailed information about your child’s needs, preferences, and daily routines to guide their future caregivers.

A special needs trust helps you protect your child’s future even when you cannot be there yourself.