If your family includes a member (or members) that require special needs, there are some very important things you must consider when planning for your future. There is a special kind of trust called a “Special Needs Trust” that we at Vanguard Legal Group have found very helpful.
A special needs trust can do many things, including marking funds for future care. The special needs trust also allows assets to be under the care of an appointed trustee. As importantly, a special needs trust must prevent the inherited assets from limiting eligibility for support from the government.
Disabled persons are not eligible for Social Security’s Supplemental Security Income (SSI) benefits in certain situations. SSI provides monthly living payments and assists in qualifying for Medicaid and food stamps. The assets in a special needs trust are not counted as an asset when qualifying for SSI, which means that a disabled individual can retain eligibility for government programs no matter what the value of their assets.
Vanguard Legal Group attorneys are experienced in creating special needs trusts, so if you have a family member that will require advanced care after your death, it’s important to let us know.