Yakima Special Needs Trusts Lawyer
People living with disabilities in Washington are fortunate to have access to a wide range of public assistance, support programs, and benefits. However, most of these government-managed programs have strict rules on eligibility. Many are needs-based, so they will take into account the disabled individual’s earnings and assets. While you welcome the opportunity to provide for a loved one in such a position, you could jeopardize his or her benefits with incomplete planning. Plus, there are other factors that might harm the person’s eligibility.
The solution to protect your loved one’s interests is a special needs trust, one of many types of trusts to consider with estate planning. When properly created in accordance with all legal requirements, you can support this individual and still preserve eligibility for public assistance. At Moulton Law Offices, we are well-versed in the laws and knowledgeable about strategies to ensure your planning works as you intended. Please contact us to set up a consultation with a Yakima special needs trusts lawyer, and check out a helpful summary.
Overview on Special Needs Trusts
These trusts create legal separation, since all assets transferred into it are owned by the entity instead of the individual. The disabled beneficiary will still qualify for Social Security, Medicaid/Medicare, and many other programs, assuming other requirements are met. There are three scenarios in which a special needs trust can be used to achieve this objective.
1. The disabled person’s loved ones want to provide support, but a gift or inheritance would create problems with eligibility for public programs. Instead, you can create a special needs trust to make distributions to the beneficiary.
2. With a self-settled special needs trust, the disabled person owns assets to put into the trust. The agreement creating the trust must be signed before the beneficiary turns 65 years old, and it must establish an irrevocable trust.
3. A person may become disabled due to injuries from an accident, leading to a personal injury lawsuit. The award would normally be counted by CMS, but it can be diverted to a special needs trust.
Estate Planning Options for Special Needs Trusts
If it is you that seeks to create a special needs trust under #1 above, you can include the provisions in your will. However, creating a living trust enables you to act as the trustee to support your loved one. The key is complying with the strict rules on special needs trusts, because mistakes could disqualify the beneficiary.
With help from a Washington estate planning lawyer from Moulton Law Offices, you can avoid errors. Generally, all distributions from the trust must be for expenses not covered by public assistance, such as:
- Clothing and shoes;
- Travel and entertainment; and,
- A computer, tablet, and TV.
Contact a Yakima Special Needs Trusts Lawyer for Additional Information
If you are looking for ways to provide for a loved one with special needs, please contact Moulton Law Offices to speak to a Yakima special needs trusts attorney. We can schedule a consultation to review your circumstances and determine whether a special needs trust is a good fit.