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Addressing future care needs of Pennsylvanian Special Needs Loved One

Trusts may be helpful for special needs individuals, regardless of their ages. Often, it is believed that only older people might require residence in a nursing home, but there are conditions and illnesses that make it necessary for younger special needs people to receive this level of care.

This is when it is important to understand the laws of the state and Medicaid when it comes to people with special needs. Preparing for these issues is beneficial not just for the person who needs care, but also for the relatives who will derive peace of mind from knowing that care will be provided for their loved one and how trusts can be useful.

A special needs trust may be a useful tool for people with these concerns. One example is a family that has a 15-year-old with Down's syndrome. Since this young man's life expectancy is generally around 60 years, it was important for his parents to prepare for the eventuality that they might not always be around to provide care for him. A special needs trust can help with ensuring that government assistance will continue, whether the parents are there or not.

The strategy these parents used to ensure that their son's government benefits would continue was to craft wills which included a special needs trust for their son that would hold assets to benefit their son but would not disqualify him from receiving government benefits, such as Supplemental Security Income (SSI) or Medicaid. When the son turns 18 and receives assistance from the state and federal government, his benefits will continue after his parents have passed on. The goal is for the special needs trust to supplement his government benefits.

Formulating a coherent strategy for the future care needs of a loved one can help to ease the worries that often accompany caring for someone who has special needs. Having help from an elder law attorney experienced in these matters is a wise step in being prepared.

Source:Ă‚ WFMZ.com, "Life Lessons: Finances for special needs," accessed on March 24, 2017

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