Why Is A Special Needs Trust Important?
Another area where assets are can wind up going directly to the child are beneficiary designations. How many of you have life insurance? Either through work or you’ve gone out and purchased it. Many times, they will ask you, “where do you want the money to go?” Often times you will name your spouse first, and then what? You going to name your kids? Sometimes people don’t name anybody and the plan just defaults to your heirs at law, which goes back to following what the states going to do with it. Other times we see with IRA’s is there’s a check the box where it says “My living children” That will put your child with special needs as the beneficiary of of IRA, that 401k, 403b. whatever you might have. That’s another way, and guess what? The probate court has nothing to do with that. Any asset that passes by a beneficiary designation avoids probate. The probate court has nothing to do with it. It follows whatever the direction is that you left behind in that designation. That’s even harder to change. Other situations include grandparents, very well intentioned grandparents wanting to help out their grandchild that they know has special needs. Often times we’ll see a specific gift of twenty thousand dollars that goes directly to the child. If it goes directly to the child and the child is on the Deeming Waiver, you’ve lost the deeming waiver until that money is dealt with. These are all situations that need to be addressed and sometimes other family members or friends want to include the special needs child in their planning and if they leave it directly to the child they’re gonna cause problems, the money that they want to help the child with causes more problems than it’s worth, depending on the size of the gift.