If a close family member has special needs, there are unique issues you need to take into consideration with respect to estate planning. For example, it is important for you to think about how you will divide your assets among beneficiaries and a loved one with a disability, as well as the potential ways in which inheritance will impact someone with special needs. By carefully taking these topics into account, you can make life much better for your loved one who is struggling with a physical or mental disability.
Regrettably, some people do not carefully reflect on these topics and their estate is not handled efficiently after they die. Moreover, inheritance can actually raise concerns for those with special needs when estate planning is not handled properly.
Looking at special needs trusts and public assistance
According to the California Department of Health Care Services, special needs trusts are very advantageous for disabled beneficiaries. Often, those with special needs depend on publicly-funded assistance programs and special needs trusts allow disabled beneficiaries to continue receiving the support they need. For example, a special needs trust can allow a beneficiary to retain their eligibility for disability benefits and health care while also receiving assets from an estate.
Looking at the other benefits of special needs trusts
Aside from ensuring that your loved one’s eligibility for critical assistance is not adversely affected by your estate plan, special needs trusts can also provide peace of mind for families who have a loved one with special needs. Your estate plan makes your wishes clear with respect to the division of your assets and other critical matters and it is helpful to set up an estate plan carefully and in a timely manner.