The idea of planning long term care for a loved one with special needs can be incredibly overwhelming.
Planning for the entire family, their goals and priorities is the best way to ensure that your loved one with special needs will be taken care of today and throughout their lifetime. Your financial plan is the road-map to achieving important goals for you and other family members, such as funding education, saving for retirement and protecting your family in the even something would happen to you. Your loved one with special needs may still depend on you after you stop earning a regular paycheck, are you prepared?
When structuring asset ownership as part of a financial plan, be mindful of government eligibility and asset limits that affect your loved one with special needs. A special needs trust enables you and other to provide funds for their support without jeopardizing eligibility for government benefits. A special needs trust also can receive distributions from an annuity, life insurance death benefit or other asset intended to support a loved one with special needs, without risking their eligibility for government benefits.
Once you have defined the goals of your special needs trust, you need to find the right individual to provide care to your loved one with special needs when you aren’t able to. This should be someone likely to outlive your loved one with special needs and who will follow your outlined letter of intent. A guardian oversees your loved one with special needs day to day care, housing, medical appointments, entertainment, transportation as well as make important decisions in their lives. A trustee is responsible for managing funds, decisions and administrative duties for the trust itself.
Though it can be difficult to look beyond the care of a loved one with special needs, you need to plan with the intention to provide for both your loved one with special needs as well as your own. Our full special needs financial planning process helps you budget for day to day expenses, including health and personal care, educational experiences, transportation and other random costs that may arise unplanned. As you consistently set aside resources and fund your plan, you protect your family against risks and use investments to accumulate assets according to your goals, risk profile and time horizon. Lastly, because situations unplanned for may suddenly happen, we’ll help you to periodically evaluate and update your plan to reflect your current situation and continue to make sure its meeting the necessary goals.