Grand Blanc Special Needs Planning Attorneys
Also Serving Flint, Rochester Hills, and the Surrounding Areas
If you are the parent of a child with special needs, you are well aware of the many financial, medical, and social issues involved. Meeting your loved one’s needs can involve finding financial assistance now and ensuring care and financial assistance will be available when you are gone.
At Mannor Law Group, PLLC, we can:
- Alleviate your concerns about protecting your child’s eligibility for Social Security Income (SSI), Medicaid, and other government benefits
- Maximize the amount of public and private resources available to you
- Help you address the planning needs of other family members
To accomplish these and other goals, we will work closely with you to understand your priorities. We will also analyze your financial situation so we can determine what benefits are available based upon your particular case. In addition, we will use all the legal tools and strategies at our disposal to maximize your benefits today and plan for the care of your special needs child in the future.
What is a Special Needs Trust?
Often, when a disabled person inherits property or assets, this inheritance can disqualify them from essential government assistance programs, such as SSI or Medicaid. While these assistance programs serve a vital role, they often do not cover everything to maintain a disabled person's quality of life. Families may find themselves at a loss when planning for their disabled loved one's care after their passing.
A special needs trust can pass wealth to a disabled person without affecting existing or future benefits. As these assets are held in a trust, they are not considered part of the disabled person's assets when they undergo means-testing for government benefits.
There are two primary types of special needs trusts:
- Self-Settled - Funded from the disabled person's own property
- Third-Party - Funded by someone else, typically a family member
How Can Funds in a Special Needs Trust Be Used?
A trust can fund services and care that can dramatically improve the quality of life for your loved one with special needs. In general, these trusts can supplement the services and/or care not provided by means tested programs.
Supplemental services can include things like:
- Access to a wheelchair-accessible van
- Special dental and medical care
- Physical therapy
- Personal caregivers
Importantly, the trustee of a special needs trust cannot directly give money to the beneficiary. However, the trustee can use the assets to purchase services and necessities for the beneficiary.
How to Create a Special Needs Trust in Michigan
The concept behind special needs trusts may be simple, but their proper design and implementation is not. The many different Medicaid and other public assistance programs have varying rules for eligibility. In addition, care requirements for your special needs loved one will change over time. So, too, will your financial situation.
That's why it is important to retain an attorney for setting up a special needs trust. Only an attorney with experience in special needs trust matters can help you create a trust document that truly protects assets from means-testing.
We have extensive experience in this complicated area of the law. Our team can help you create a special needs trust as part of your broader estate plan. With a comprehensive plan in place, you will enjoy the peace of mind that comes from knowing your special needs loved one will be well cared for today and for the rest of their life.
Comprehensive, Holistic Approach to Planning Through Personal Care, Support, and Education
Nationally Board Certified as an Elder Law Attorney by the National Elder Law Foundation
Specialized Workshops Offered Throughout the Year to Support You and Your Family