On January 31, 2015

Picking up from where Estate Planning for Your Special Needs Child: Here’s What You Should Know (Pt. 1) left off, here, we will continue discussing what you may need to know if you have a child with special needs and you are getting ready to start estate planning for you and your family.

Estate Planning for Your Special Needs Child: The Options

With estate planning for your special needs child, there are a lot options, but only a few that will really protect your child. Contact us for help with all of your estate planning needs.

With estate planning for your special needs child, there are a lot options, but only a few that will really protect your child. Contact us for help with all of your estate planning needs.

Here’s a general overview of the options for estate planning for your special needs child, according to the American Bar Association (ABA), as well as some info regarding which are of these options are more or less recommended by the ABA:

  1. Directly distributing assets to your special needs child – This is NOT recommended, as these assets can end up making your child ineligible to receive important government benefits.
  2. Disinheriting your special needs child – This is also generally NOT recommended, as disinheriting your child can leave him or her without any financial safety net or cushion. Should anything happen to your child’s government benefits in the future (like they end up being cut back or terminated altogether), this can be extremely detrimental to your child, especially if your child has no other family to rely on after you pass.
  3. Leaving assets for your special needs child to another family member – Again, this is typically NOT recommended, as there is no way to legally require these other family members to use these assets for your special needs child. What could be worse is that, in the event these other family members have a lot of debt/creditors, these creditors could seize the assets intended for your special needs child, leaving him or her without the financial support you had wanted him or her to have after your passing.
  4. Setting up a third-party trust for the child – This is also generally NOT recommended, as this trust could be used to deny your child essential government benefits.
  5. Setting up a special needs trust for the child – This IS highly recommended by the ABA, as this type of trust can be devised to financially support your special needs child without making him or her ineligible for government benefits.

We will wrap up this discussion regarding estate planning for your special needs child in the conclusion to this blog series that will publish in early February – be sure to check it out!

Denver Estate Planning Attorneys at JR Phillips & Associates, PC

Do you need help with estate planning for your special needs child? If so, you can turn to the estate planning lawyers at JR Phillips & Associates, PC. We provide a thoughtful, comprehensive approach to our clients’ estate planning and other legal needs, and we take pride in helping each of our clients and their families find the best solutions for them.

Let’s discuss your options during an initial consultation. To schedule this meeting, call us at (303) 741-2400 or email us using the contact form at the top of this page.

From our offices in Denver, we serve clients throughout the southwest and southeast Metro Area, including (but not limited to) people in Highlands Ranch, Littleton, Castle Rock, Parker, Aurora, Greenwood Village and Englewood.

Categories: Estate Planning, Special Needs Trusts, Trusts