Special Needs Planning

How to Create a Lifetime of Care for Someone with Special Needs

If there is someone in your life with special needs, you may often struggle with the question of what will happen to your loved one if you’re no longer around? Who will assume care for your loved one and how will they finance what they need?

This is what estate planning was made for. You can do something right now to ensure your special needs beneficiary has the proper care for the rest of his or her life. As you consult with your attorney to create a special needs trust or other estate planning tools, take into consideration the following:

The amount of financial support your special needs loved one will require over his or her life. You should start by calculating how much support you are providing now and then think about the support they will need as they reach adulthood and into their senior years. Consider if he or she will be able to provide any of their own support, or will rely on government benefits. Of course, you also need to estimate how much you are able to give.

Governmental benefits protection. If your special needs loved one already receives government benefits from Medicare or Supplemental Security Income (SSI), your plan will need to take this into consideration and not provide your child with too much income to disqualify them from these benefits. Usually this can be avoided through the creation of a special needs trust.

Who will manage the finances for the special needs beneficiary? When you create a special needs trust, you will need to name a trustee or trustees to manage the trust assets for the benefit of your the special needs person. Choose someone you know who cares about your beneficiary and who is willing to assume the responsibilities of caring for him or her.

Beyond just the financial, how do you want them cared for after you are gone? How can you use your financial resources to ensure that actually happens? Call our office today to schedule a time for us to sit down and talk about a Family Wealth Planning Session, where we build provisions into trusts that make it more likely that your child’s care will continue in alignment with your desires, hopes and dreams for their future.