Why is Planning Important for Parents of Special Needs Children?
Autism Speaks Special Needs Financial Planning Tool Kit is a Great Resource
Discover more information to help you plan!
No one wants to think about a time when they are no longer around, but the unexpected happens, and what you do or don’t do today can have a serious impact on your child’s future. Who will take care of them? Will they have finances to cover food, housing, as well as other necessities and items to lead happy and healthy lives?
You need to have a will, of course, but it’s more complicated than that. Simply naming a child with special needs as a recipient of assets in your will or retirement account can cause the loss of government funds such as Supplemental Security Income. You also need to choose a guardian and whether to use a fiduciary, or the courts will step in to make those decisions, which may not be consistent with your vision for the child’s future.
Check out this family’s special needs planning story
Chris and Lori are parents to two boys with special needs. Zach is significantly impacted by athetoid cerebral palsy and Noah has high functioning autism spectrum disorder, ASD. While there can be struggles, they feel their lives are blessed with so much joy. They are so grateful for benefits that help them care for Zach and ensure that Noah has a productive and satisfying future. They recognized the importance of developing an Estate Plan to safeguard the needs and benefits of both boys as adults, regardless of their own disposition. They have established a Guardianship for Zachary, who is turning 18 soon and when they have passed away, a third party Special Needs Trust will be funded with, at minimum, life insurance proceeds.
Finding the Right Professionals
Selecting the right attorney, planner or other professional is vital in planning for the future of a special needs child. The following resources are designed to help you make the right choice:
- Meet our SARRC Professional Advisory Council
- Academy of Special Needs Planners
- Special Needs Alliance
- Additional Resources
- A Guide to Guardianship & Conservatorship, State Bar of AZ
The information on this website is not intended as legal or tax advice. For such advice, please consult an attorney or tax advisor. Figures cited in any examples are for illustrative purposes only. References to tax rates include federal taxes only and are subject to change. State law may further impact your individual results. Annuities are subject to regulation by the State of California. Payments under such agreements, however, are not protected or otherwise guaranteed by any government agency or the California Life and Health Insurance Guarantee Association. A charitable gift annuity is not regulated by the Oklahoma Insurance Department and is not protected by a guaranty association affiliated with the Oklahoma Insurance Department. Charitable gift annuities are not regulated by and are not under the jurisdiction of the South Dakota Division of Insurance.