If you are the parent of a special needs child, you know that your child may need special care and support. As you age and look to the future, you probably have concerns about what will happen to your kids and how you can care for them. With certain estate planning tools, you can have a say in what happens and provide for your loved ones.
A special needs trust is a specific type of estate planning tool that allows you to set aside and protect assets and money for the care of a loved one who cannot care for himself or herself. If you need to establish a special needs trust, you would be wise not to delay. Life is unpredictable, and you can have peace of mind knowing that you have the right protections in place.
Elements of a special needs trust
Leaving a special needs loved one assets through a will may seem like a good idea, but it may not be the right option. A trust allows you more control over what will happen to your assets and money. Trusts can vary in type and purpose, and a special needs trust allows for the care of those who may need support for years to come. Consider the following about special needs trusts:
- This type of trust is ideal for someone who needs help with housing, personal care, financial management, educational support and day-to-day activities.
- Assets in a special needs trust will not disqualify a beneficiary from receiving government benefits, whereas money left through a will could impact eligibility.
- You can designate a trustee, who should be a person you can depend on, to decide how to use the money and assets in the trust and when to pay for certain things.
The terms of a special needs trust are very important. When drafting this type of trust, it is crucial to work with an experienced estate planning attorney at every step.
Be confident about the future
With the right plans in place, you can look to the future with confidence. An estate planning attorney can help you make sure you have what you need to care for your loved ones well into the future. This may include setting up a special needs trust and other estate planning instruments like medical directives and powers of attorney.