What is Special Needs Planning?

Individuals with disabilities have a unique set of needs. There are numerous government programs, on both the federal and state level, that provide assistance to those with disabilities. These programs range from cash assistance from SSI to Medicaid Health Insurance to Life Skills Training workshops. Many of these programs offer benefits not available in the private market, which makes preserving benefit eligibility important regardless of a family’s financial status. Special needs planning assist an individual with a disability and their family and friends in structuring their financial affairs to maximize the individual with a disability’s access to economic resources without impairing access to valuable public benefits.

The centerpiece of most special needs planning is a special needs trust (SNT).A SNT is a trust formed to hold the assets and receive the income of an individual with special needs. A planning technique authorized by both Federal and Georgia law, a SNT allows an individual with a disability to retain beneficial enjoyment of their assets and income while becoming eligible for SSI and Medicaid. Benefits eligibility is not only important for clients with limited means who seek financial assistance and other government benefits, but also allows an individual to participate in programs, such as life skills workshops, which are only open to those who are Medicaid eligible.

A Special Needs Trust can be used in conjunction with other estate planning documents to ensure that those with special needs can qualify for and retain benefits.A Special Needs Trust provides superior protection to the assets of a disabled individual compared to other techniques often encouraged by well-intentioned professionals. For example, establishing a conservatorship alone is insufficient to prevent resources from being countable. Further, leaving the money to a family member with the promise of care for the disabled individual is not recommended, as the money would be subject to the party’s creditors.

Attorney William “Bill” Nabors, Jr., knows the ins and outs of the Georgia Special Needs Planning. During your free consultation you will benefit from his personal focus and dedication in this area of the law together with his unique expertise in the tax planning arena. Call us at (678) 510-1730 right now to schedule your free one hour consultation to talk to Attorney Nabors about you and your family’sSpecial Needs Planning or fill out our Contact Form.