Special Needs Trusts
Special Needs Trusts allow disabled individuals to have a safe method of receiving assets so that they are responsibly managed while also preventing the loss of government benefits, such as SSI or Medicaid.
Whether you are proactively planning for a disabled person or are dealing with a crisis involving the receipt of money that will cause a loss in benefits, our office has extensive experience preparing, administering, and even testifying about Special Needs Trusts
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Special Needs Trusts Protect Disabled Individuals
Special Needs Trusts benefit disabled individuals by creating eligibility for public benefits throughout their lifetime while also receiving monies from a special needs trust to supplement their care. With proper planning, special needs individuals may rest in the security of a monthly trust income in addition to government benefits from SSI or Medicaid. Contact us to set up a consultation and learn more.
Qualify for Special Needs Public Benefits
A disabled person may not qualify for benefits if their income or assets are too high. Disqualification or ineligibility result when a disabled person receives money through:
- Settlement for an injury that caused their disability.
- Monetary gifts.
Instead of saving the money or using it for what they need, a special needs individual is then forced to spend down the monies received on daily care concerns as they wait to reapply for benefits.
These governmental benefits include:
- Transportation services.
- Healthcare coverage, including expensive and necessary medications and treatments.
- Residential living benefits like food, shelter, and utilities.
Establish Quality of Life
We design a special needs trust for a disabled beneficiary so that the money and assets do not count against their eligibility for public benefits. When you establish a special needs trust, your disabled loved one can receive a monthly income from the trust and still qualify for the benefits they desperately need.
Setting up a special needs trust establishes a disabled individual’s quality of life for their entire lifetime. The trust holds the assets provided for your disabled loved one. The trust may also be funded by other individuals, including the disabled person.
Special Needs Trust Types
Third Party Special Needs Trust (Supplemental Needs Trust):
Generally used in planning for the future of a loved one, such as a disabled child. Parents may make a Trust or provision in their Will for a Third Party Special Needs Trust to be funded for the benefit of the disabled child.
This planning ensures that the disabled individual does not lose much needed public benefits. The trust permits them to enjoy the inheritance they may receive.
First Party Special Needs Trust (D4A Trust):
First party trusts must be created and funded for the primary benefit of the disabled beneficiary before age 65 and are irrevocable (can’t be changed or revoked once created). In addition, the disabled person must be considered disabled by the Social Security Administration. Only certain family members may create a First Party Special Needs Trust and the trust includes a Medicaid payback provision.
These types of trusts are usually recommended for:
- Personal injury settlements.
- Unexpected inheritance.
- Alimony and child support issues.
- Inheritance received by a disabled person where there was inadequate planning.
Get The Help You Deserve with Special Needs Trusts
At Hopler, Wilms & Hanna, PLLC, a significant portion of our practice is devoted to assisting those with disabilities in the management of their assets. Our experience sets us up to handle any issue, including:
- Formulating a strategy for a disabled person’s needs for the future.
- Diverting an inheritance to a Special Needs Trust to prevent losing public assistance. We also handle all related court filings and hearings.
- Handle Trustee responsibilities or any disputes that arise in the management of a trust.
- Plan and protect a disabled person’s wealth. We also work with financial advisors to assist their clients.
- Set up a Special Needs Trusts to receive assets on behalf of a disabled person receiving a settlement. We also educate the Court on the subject for their necessary approval.
We work in the area of special needs trusts so that disabled individuals can live their best life. Contact us today to set up a consultation to find out how we can help you.
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