All children deserve the thought and foresight that goes into estate planning, but estate planning for a special needs child takes on a special kind of significance. Whether you have a child with a physical, medical, or intellectual disability, planning for their future is a priority. Pay attention to these three tips for estate planning when your beneficiaries have special needs.
Tip #1: Understand the Impact of Money and Assets
Many individuals with special needs take advantage of government programs that aid in their support and care, including medical care. Leaving an inheritance, assets, or financial benefits to your child could leave them ineligible for the government assistance they need. Without thoughtful estate planning, your child could find themselves running through their inheritance quickly due to the cost of their care and loss of the government assistance they need.
Tip #2: Think About a Special Needs Trust
There are different trust structures for different circumstances, and when you have a special needs child, a special needs trust is worth considering. The primary benefit of this type of protection is that the trust and the assets within aren’t factors when qualifying for public assistance. The assets and financial support from the trust can cover needs not met by that assistance.
Tip #3: Consult an Estate Planning Lawyer
There are many legal considerations and ramifications of inheritance and trusts, so it’s critical to set them up correctly. This is especially true when your beneficiary is a child with special needs. Consulting an attorney with experience with estate planning is the best way to ensure your plans will work in your child’s best interest.
Estate planning for a special needs child requires care, consideration, and a legal team on your side. Contact McCutchen McLean, LLC to schedule your consultation.