Special Needs Planning

As the parent or loved one of an individual with special needs, it is your responsibility to ensure that he or she receives the kind of care you know they need, even after you are unable to direct his or her treatment. Special needs planning is your chance to do exactly this. Essentially, you will be working with an experienced lawyer at Aiello, Harris, Marth, Tunnero & Shifman, P.C. to create a trust, decide upon guardianship and put clear advance directives into existence.

Issues Related to Special Needs Planning

The day-to-day care of a loved one with special needs is complex, time-consuming and often requires you to become an advocate on issues you previously knew very little about. An experienced special needs lawyer at Aiello, Harris, Marth, Tunnero & Shifman, P.C. will be crucial to working out the logistics related to the following special needs planning areas:

  • Special needs estate planning
  • Insurance authorizations
  • Special education laws
  • Living arrangements
  • Trusts and wills

Special Needs Trusts

All parents, grandparents and guardians want to protect the futures of their kids, regardless of whether they have special needs. For parents, grandparents and guardians of special needs children, this is a trickier road to traverse than for others. What many families of individuals with special needs fail to realize is that, if an amount of over $2,000 is left to an individual with special needs in a trust or will, that individual will most often lose any eligibility for government financial assistance programs. For parents and guardians looking to leave their special needs child a gift of financial resources in a trust, it is vital to understand the difference between the special needs trust options.

  • Support Trusts: If your dependent is likely going to need to receive assistance from SSI or Medicaid, this is not the trust option for you. In a support trust, the trustee makes distributions for the daily necessities of life (clothing, food, education, etc.), but the beneficiary loses his or her eligibility for federal financial assistance.
  • Special Needs Trusts: If your dependent is going to need financial assistance from the federal government, there are two types of special needs trusts to investigate. With both of these trusts, the trustee manages all resources without the beneficiary losing his or her eligibility for financial assistance.
  • Third Party Special Needs Trusts: Distributed via will or trust, a third party special needs trust is created using a parent’s assets as part of their estate plan.
  • Self-Settled Special Needs Trusts: Similar to the above-mentioned trust, this option uses the child’s assets as the basis for the trust money.

Getting Help With Special Needs Planning

Planning for the continued care of a loved one with special needs is a complicated process. To ensure your loved one gets the help he or she is entitled to without losing any needed financial assistance, call (908) 561-5577 or contact us online today to speak with an expert in planning for special needs care.

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