The purpose of a special needs trust is to enhance or protect the quality of life of a person with a disability. Specifically, it does this by maximizing the resources available to them, without disqualifying him or her from eligibility for public benefits, including Supplementary Security Income (SSI) and Medicaid.
When estate planning, rather than leaving property directly to a loved one with a disability, it may be best to establish a special needs trust for that person and leave the property to the trust.
The thought of a child gone missing is enough to strike fear in the heart of any parent. This is an especially acute worry for parents that have special needs children. And in some cases there are few options besides tracking every move for protection.
A recent case is illustrative. Avonte Oquendo, a severely autistic and nonverbal child, walked out of his high school in Long Island City on October 4th, 2013 and vanished. According to a lawyer representing the family, the young teen had walked right past a security desk and onto the streets. Almost half of children with severe spectrum autism attempt to wander away at least once during childhood. Senator Charles Schumer of New York has called for the Department of Justice to create and fund a program to provide voluntary tracking devices for individuals with autism and other developmental disorders. The goal is to assist and prevent the individuals from going missing and to provide resources to better locate a child if they were to ever disappear.