Individuals with disabilities can create their own self-settled trusts

The Special Needs Trust Fairness Act provides that individuals with disabilities can now create their own special needs trusts instead of having to rely on others. The Act was included as Section 5007 of the 21st Century Cures Act which was signed into law

Special Needs Planning Mistakes

1. Disinheriting the child. When a special needs child is disinherited, that child will need to depend on government benefits such as Medicaid and Supplemental Security Income (SSI).  While these programs can be greatly beneficial, it is not wise to

Latest Medicaid Information for New Jersey for 2011

Protections for the Community Spouse: Community Spouse Resource Allowance (CSRA): Minimum: $21,912 Maximum: $109,560 Increased CSRA: Permitted. New Jersey follows the income-first rule. Annuities: Actuarially sound annuities are not permitted. Monthly Maintenance Needs Allowance: Minimum: $1,821.25 Maximum: $2,739 Transfers: Average

Top 9 Most Expensive Medicaid Mistakes

1. Mistakenly thinking it’s too late to plan. Even after a person has moved to a nursing home it is not too late to plan.  Our law firm can assess your situation and provide you with numerous options.  2. Transferring

Life insurance for disabled or special needs children

When a child is born, many people purchase a life insurance policy for him or her. The parent is typically the owner and beneficiary of the policy, and many of these policies are known as industrial or debit policies. There

Medicare and Medicaid Basics

Medicare Medicare Part A covers up to 100 days of “skilled nursing” care per spell of illness. However, the definition of “skilled nursing” and the other conditions for obtaining this coverage are quite stringent, meaning that few nursing home residents

Conservatorship or Legal Guardianship?: How Do You Know When It’s Needed?

The appointment of a legal guardian is something that's not taken lightly

The Need for Long Term Care Planning

One of the greatest fears of older Americans is that they may end up in a nursing home. This not only means a great loss of personal autonomy, but also a tremendous financial price. Depending on location and level of

Conservatorship or Legal Guardianship: Which is the Right Choice?

Conservatorship concerns only the conservatee's financial matters when they need assistance.

Estate Planning When a Spouse is Confronting Health Issues (Estate Planning for the Healthy Spouse)

When one spouse is a resident of a nursing facility or medical institution (the “institutionalized spouse”), but the other spouse continues to live in the community (the “community spouse”), the community spouse may take a number of steps to retain

10 Costly Mistakes to Avoid in Helping Families with Special Needs

This article examines the unique planning requirements of families with children, grandchildren or other family members (such as parents) with special needs. There are many misconceptions in this area that result in costly mistakes in planning for these special needs

Leave Your IRA to a Special Needs Trust

In a private letter ruling recently, the IRS addressed the issue of transferring an inherited IRA into a Special Needs Trust. The law around taxation of inherited IRAs and the interaction with trusts has been unpredictable and fast-moving for several

Deficient Nursing Homes Listed

The federal Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) has released the complete list of U.S. nursing homes that have failed to meet safety and quality standards for care.The list, which identifies 131 “Special Focus Facilities” that require additional oversight,

Recent Case Allows Special Needs Trust After Death

A New York trial court recently approved a trustee’s petition to reform his deceased father’s trust in order to protect his disabled sister’s Medicaid benefits. In Matter of Newman (2008 NY Slip Op 50127, Jan. 22, 2008). When he died

Introduction to Special Needs Estate Planning

Special Needs Estate Planning focuses on the need to provide for the special needs of our loved ones with disabilities when we are no longer there to organize and advocate on their behalf. It is essential that we start planning

Supplemental Needs Trusts

Supplemental Needs Trusts, also called a special needs trust, is a trust in the United States that is designed to provide benefits to, and protect the assets of, physically disabled or mentally disabled persons and still allow such persons to

Estate Planning for Families with Special Needs Children

Families with special needs children must exercise extra care in making their estate plans. This is true whether their special needs child is still a minor or now an adult, and particularly so when the child is – or in

Selection of the Trustee of a Special Needs Trust

There are obviously many important considerations to ponder when designing an estate plan for a beneficiary who has special needs. But the most important issue in the planning process is picking the person or persons who will be in charge

Evaluating the Special Needs Estate Planning Attorney

Consider the attorney’s:Education, Certifications and Memberships e.g. Special Needs Alliance (SNA); National Academy of Elder Law Attorneys (NAELA); American College of Trust & Estate Counsel (ACTEC); American Bar Association (ABA); and State Bar AssociationsTime/experience in trust, estate, and disability practiceCommunity

Special Needs Planning

One of the best parts of my practice is when I have the opportunity to assist parents of a child with special needs. A concern of all parents, (but especially parents of special needs children) is what will happen to

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