If you want to provide resources for the benefit of someone with a disability, you should consider the creation of a special needs trust. This type of trust, alternately referred to as a supplemental needs trust, can enhance the life of the beneficiary without impacting his or her government benefit eligibility.
Let’s look at special needs planning from an overview before we examine the costs.
Medicaid and Supplemental Security Income
Medicaid is a government health insurance program for people who can demonstrate significant financial need. Supplemental Security Income is also a need-based program. Many people with disabilities rely on both of these programs for care, treatment, and income.
Because they are need-based programs, you could lose your eligibility if you were to come into a significant sum of money. This is something to take into consideration when you have someone with a disability on your inheritance list. If you were to name someone with a disability in your last will, his or her inheritance could impact benefit eligibility.
Special Needs Trusts
A good way to provide assets for someone with a disability would be to make this person the beneficiary of a special needs trust. When you create the trust agreement you name a trustee. This individual or entity will administer the trust.
The trustee can use assets that you have conveyed into the trust to satisfy the supplemental needs of the beneficiary. The expenditures are approved for expenses that are not covered by government benefits. As a result, when you create such a trust you are facilitating an improved quality of life for the beneficiary, but you are not jeopardizing government benefit eligibility.
Cost of Trust Creation
There are certain legal costs that are going to go along with the creation of a special needs trust. The exact figure will vary depending on the circumstances.
When you are thinking about the costs associated with a special needs trust, you may want to focus on the cost of a loss of benefits as well. Depending on the disability in question, care and treatment that is paid for by the Medicaid program could cost millions of dollars over a lifetime. A loss of SSI could be costly as well.
Special Needs Planning Consultation
If you are concerned about the cost of trust creation, we would be glad to discuss special needs planning with you in person. We offer consultations in our office located in Kew Gardens, Queens, and you can request an appointment electronically through this website.
At the consultation we will answer all of your questions, address the matter of cost, and help you create a custom crafted estate plan that ideally suits your needs if you decide to go forward.