Special needs trusts are often set up on behalf of a disabled or mentally challenged client who is called the beneficiary. Most of the time, a responsible family member becomes the trustee of this account and manages the finances or property within the account. Trusts are used to provide for the future needs of the beneficiary, to ensure that they do not lose their governmental assistance and to protect them from inheritance or legal problems.
While many parents agree that special needs trusts are needed to provide for their special needs child both while the parents are alive, and after they have passed on, most have no idea how to start the trust, how to fund it or how to protect it. The best person to contact is a special needs attorney, such as one from Newman, Aaronson, Vanaman, who has dealt with many of these concerns. The attorney can help with legal paperwork and can counsel parents or guardians about how much money or what type of property should be left in the trust.
While it can be difficult to know how much money needs to be left for the beneficiary in a trust, parents can make safe guesses by estimating how much they are currently spending and guessing on how the child will be cared for in the future. Individuals should consider housing, transportation, and medical costs as well as any care-giving and personal needs that will need to be met by a different individual once the parents have passed on. Parents should also know their child’s predicted life expectancy as well as payments that they should be entitled to through Social Security, Medicaid, and Medicare.