Boca Raton Special Needs Trusts Lawyer
In Florida, a Special Needs Trust refers to any trust that is designed to protect a beneficiary who is physically or mentally disabled. With a Special Needs Trust, you can leave assets to your special needs beneficiary without impacting their ability to obtain needs-based government benefits, such as Supplemental Security Income (SSI) or Medicaid. Special needs trusts include limitations on how assets can be used so that they are not used to pay for expenses that are otherwise funded exclusively by the government program.
Creating a Special Needs Trust can become very complicated, and there are many laws and rules that govern these important estate planning tools. Our Boca Raton special needs trusts lawyer can ensure your loved ones are fully protected.
Special Needs Trusts and Medicaid
Medicaid’s ceiling for the amount of a recipient’s assets is very low at just $2,000. (?) When assets are placed into a special needs trust, however, those assets are not considered countable for the purposes of Medicaid. Trust agreements usually allow the trustee to distribute assets or income to a beneficiary as long as it does not diminish or disqualify a beneficiary’s Medicaid benefit.
Although the assets within a special needs trust do not count toward a person’s eligibility or ineligibility for Medicaid, they can be used to pay for living expenses that Medicaid does not cover. These expenses can include rent, mortgage payments, utilities, and food.
Third-Party Special Needs Trusts
A third-party special needs trust can be included as part of another Trust or stand alone as a separate trust. These too, are created for the beneficiary of a Medicaid recipient, and they are created by a third party. Parents and grandparents are often the third parties who create these trusts. When this is the case, the third party often drafts a revocable living trust with a special needs provision. This provision states that the trustee must retain and withhold any assets or funds within the trust that could impact the SSI, Medicaid, and other government assistance benefits the beneficiary is already receiving.
Third-party special needs trusts are included in many Living Trusts and Wills, as they are a very important planning tool. Parents and grandparents cannot predict what will happen with their loved one’s health who may require government assistance. No family member wants to force a disabled beneficiary to accept an inheritance that would impact their government benefits. In the event that the beneficiary of a special needs trust passes away before using the funds and assets within the trust, the balance will then transfer to their descendants and heirs.
Call Our Special Needs Trusts Lawyers in Boca Raton for a Consultation
Special needs trusts are important estate planning tools that can provide great protection for your loved ones. In order to do so, they must be drafted properly. At SAMUELS WOOD PLLC, our Boca Raton special needs trust lawyers can advise on the type of special needs trust that is right for you and draft one that provides the full protection you are seeking. Call us now at 561-864-3371 or contact us online to schedule a consultation with one of our experienced attorneys.