When Family Wants to Help Your Child with Special Needs

Very often a family member such as a grandparent, aunt or uncle or even a sibling would like to give the disabled individual a cash gift or other assets. Although the services available through government benefits are substantial, the actual cash benefits are not. Outright gifts might cause the disabled person’s assets to increase above the minimum established by the government (currently $3,000 for Medical Assistance and $2,000 for SSI).

Once a Special or Supplemental Needs Trust has been set up by the parent, grandparent or guardian for the disabled person, other family members can provide additional assets for that individual, creating a benefit without disqualifying the individual from their government benefits. Family members can contribute cash, stocks, bonds and even real estate for the benefit of the disabled individual.

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