Monday, July 7, 2014
The number of students with disabilities has increased at a faster rate than both the general population and school enrollment. In 2010, approximately 2.8 million school-age children were reported to have a disability.
Many parents assume that they will be forced to disinherit their child with a disability because if they leave them money, they will lose the government benefits. While it is true that your child could be disqualified from benefits if you are not cautious, creating an effective estate plan that includes a Special Needs Trust can help preserve a child’s eligibility for government benefits and other programs.
A Special Needs Trust is an effective way to leave assets intended for that child in the trust to supplement benefits received from government programs. Instead of paying for medical care, the trustee can use the funds in the Trust for the “best use and comfort” of the beneficiary and pay for items and services Medicaid will not. A properly designed Special Needs Trust can ensure your child will receive your assets, your retirement funds, and any other items of value without generating negative consequences.
See Mark Eghrari, No, You Don’t Have to Disinherit a Child With Special Needs, Forbes, July 2, 2014.