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A special needs trust may help qualify you for aid

The soaring costs of long-term care throughout Georgia and the rest of the country make it difficult for many people to plan for a safe and secure future as they grow older or deal with an ongoing disability. Thousands of vulnerable people find themselves stuck in the "donut hole" each year, making too much income to qualify for government assistance while the ongoing costs of care drain away their finances.

In many instances, some careful planning and proper use of powerful financial tools can help those stuck in this spot to keep their rights and priorities secure, allowing them to qualify for the aid that they need while still enjoying the resources they have. A special needs trust may hold the solution that you need, if you or someone you love needs government assistance but still have some resources to preserve.

Why use a special needs trust?

Without government assistance like Medicaid, many of those who are most vulnerable simply cannot afford the care they need. Unfortunately, there is often a big gap between the income limits that restrict who receives assistance and the actual cost of care. To bridge this gap, a special needs trust rearranges a vulnerable person's assets so that they still have access to their resources while qualifying for assistance.

By placing the vulnerable person's assets in a special needs trust, their personal net worth drops drastically. On paper, and in the eyes of the government, moving to a trust in this way reduces the vulnerable person's income, so that they may qualify for the assistance they need.

Does a special needs trust reduce quality of life?

Many people fear that placing their income in a trust will make it too difficult to reach their money if they need it. This is a reasonable concern, but a well-built trust with a high-quality executor can anticipate many of these needs ahead of time and prevent problems.

Once resources are held in a trust, an executor disperses them to the vulnerable person on a regular schedule, or as their needs arise. Special needs trusts allow executors to disperse funds for many reasons, including quality of life concerns like groceries, electronics, transportation, entertainment and gifts. While dealing with a trust adds an extra layer of planning to the vulnerable person's financial decisions, the benefits typically outweigh the disadvantages by a large margin.

Protecting your rights or the rights of a vulnerable person you love is an important priority, and one that you should not put off. The longer that you wait to begin building a legal strategy to keep yourself and the ones you love secure, the more likely you are to realize you waited too long. Keep yourself and the ones you love secure with a strong plan that guards your resources while allowing you to qualify for the aid that you need.

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