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Parents of children with special needs face many challenges. After dealing with medical issues, parents often worry about their child’s economic future. Where will their child live? Who will take care of their child? How will the child be supported? Parents may think their child with a special need should be disinherited so that government benefits are retained.

Estate plans to benefit people with special needs are designed to financially assist the person while retaining that person’s present and future entitlement to various government benefits. Planning requires knowledge and coordination of the various government benefit programs such as Supplemental Security Income and Medicaid. It also requires an analysis of the source of funds used to create the estate plan, such as funds from a parent or grandparent, a personal injury settlement, an inheritance, a gift, or the person’s own funds.

Both federal and state laws provide options other than disinheritance. Our team of experienced attorneys uses several types of trusts to benefit persons with special needs, including Medicaid Payback Trusts or Special Needs Trusts, Pooled Trusts, Supplemental Services Trusts, and Third-Party Discretionary Trusts. These types of trusts can benefit the individual with special needs without jeopardizing eligibility for public benefits. For more information about these trusts and to schedule an appointment, call one of our elder law attorneys.

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