Jeffrey P. Scott & Associates, LLC
Estate Planning Tips for Families with Special Needs Children
Parents of special needs children understand the joys and challenges that accompany raising these special individuals. Like any other parent, however, they often get so busy with daily activities that they neglect to prepare for the future. If you are the parent of a special needs child, it’s important to recognize the need for a comprehensive estate plan. Here are some suggestions for getting started:
Don’t Assume Government Benefits Will Be Enough
Special needs individuals frequently receive a number of government benefits that can include Medicaid and SSI. In many cases, however, these benefits only cover the person’s basic needs. Understandably, some parents are afraid that leaving money to a special needs child in a last will and testament will jeopardize the child’s right to receive these benefits. Fortunately, there are ways to leave estate funds to your child without disqualifying him or her from receiving government assistance. Talk to your estate planning attorney about a Special Needs Trust, which can ensure your child receives enough funds to live comfortably without compromising government benefits.
No parent likes to think of leaving a child behind after death. Furthermore, many parents of young children assume that estate planning is something they can put off until their kids are adults. In reality, however, accidents and illnesses happen. Without a comprehensive estate plan in place, your child’s financial future and physical well-being may be left in the hands of the probate court. Plan early to prevent this from happening.
Don’t Assume Your Child’s Siblings Will Take on Your Child’s Care
Your child’s siblings may play an integral role in your child’s development and daily care, but it’s generally not ideal to rely on them to provide long-term financial and personal support. Unfortunately, family conflicts can develop at any time. After a family member passes away, differences of opinion among family members can lead to serious disagreements and even litigation. Additionally, your child’s siblings may desire to move out of state or engage in demanding careers or family obligations that leave them with little free time. Avoid these situations by ensuring your special needs child has a team of designated caregivers who are both qualified and willing to perform the tasks required. Your lawyer can work with you to identify the right individuals to fill these roles.
Minnesota Estate Planning and Probate Law Firm
To discuss your estate planning options regarding your special needs child, call the Minnesota probate and estate planning attorneys at Jeffrey P. Scott & Associates, LLC today our office.
This website has been prepared by Jeffrey P. Scott & Associates, LLC for informational purposes only and does not, and is not intended to, constitute legal advice. The information is not provided in the course of an attorney-client relationship and is not intended to substitute for legal advice from an attorney licensed in your jurisdiction.