Why a Disabled Person Might Benefit from a Special Needs Trust
The following question comes up from time to time, especially in families caring for a disabled individual. Families might also anticipate that a family member will become disabled and apply for government benefits like Social Security Disability Income. Is there something that can be done to better provide for the care of that disabled family member?
A Special Needs Trust might help provide the supplemental care that could make life more bearable for a disabled person. At Wadler, Perches, Hundl & Kerlick, our experienced and caring attorneys can explain how a Special Needs Trust works and help you determine if it might benefit someone anticipating disability or someone who is disabled and receiving government benefits. Call our office at 800-929-1725 for an appointment at any of our offices in Wharton, El Campo or Richmond, Texas.
Question: What is a Special Needs Trust?
Attorney Philip Hundl’s Answer: A Special Needs Trust is typically designed to benefit a disabled individual. Instead of giving assets to the beneficiary directly, assets are transferred to a Special Needs Trust by the grantor (typically a family member) or as damages paid because of a personal injury lawsuit. With a Special Needs Trust, those assets are available for the beneficiary without disqualifying him or her for government programs, such as Social Security Disability Income and Medicaid. Funds in a Special Needs Trust provide for supplemental care over and above the necessities of life (housing, food and clothing) and governmental benefits.
If you care for a disabled person who is receiving governmental benefits, you should talk to an attorney about Special Needs Trusts. If you believe that a family member may become disabled in the future, perhaps because of a progressive illness, and might be eligible for governmental benefits in the future, you should consider learning more about Special Needs Trusts.
We Can Help with All Aspects of Estate Planning
Our attorneys can help you with all aspects of estate planning, from creating a basic estate plan to more sophisticated estate planning for unique situations. Call our office at 800-929-1725 for an appointment with an attorney to better understand your estate planning options. You’ll come away from the meeting with information you need to make the best decisions for your family.