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Important things to know about special needs planning

On Behalf of | May 6, 2024 | Protected Disabled

When it comes to caring for a loved one with special needs, you need to consider the importance of planning for their future. Special needs planning involves creating a comprehensive strategy to ensure that your loved one receives the care and support they need throughout their life.

There are a couple of things to consider as you start building a special needs plan.

Your loved one’s needs

The first step in special needs planning is assessing your loved one’s specific needs. This includes considering their medical, educational and social requirements. If the beneficiary is a minor, the plan must account for decades of care and support. This may involve setting up a long-term trust and ensuring responsible management for the trust assets.

If the beneficiary is an adult, you might focus on addressing immediate needs and navigating Medicaid pre-planning challenges.  You can use funds from a Special Needs Trust for therapy, assistive technology, recreational activities and other expenses that enhance the beneficiary’s quality of life.

Income considerations

Many individuals with special needs rely on income-sensitive government benefits such as Medicaid and Supplemental Security Income. When creating a special needs plan, structure the plan in a way that preserves eligibility for these benefits. For example,  If the beneficiary received an inheritance or money through a lawsuit, proper management of those assets ensures they do not jeopardize eligibility for government benefits. A special needs trust is an effective tool for protecting these assets while still providing for the beneficiary’s needs.

Remember, special needs planning is not a one-size-fits-all process. It requires a personalized approach that considers the individual’s unique situation. With thoughtful planning and a commitment to your loved one’s well-being, you can create a plan that provides a sense of security and peace of mind for years to come.