For those with Special Needs, there are government programs to financially assist them with basic needs for living. Funds like a Settlement from personal injury or inheritance could disqualify them from these benefits far longer than the settlement amount could provide for. For this reason, a Special Needs or Supplemental Needs Trust can be established to hold funds for their benefit but not ownership.
If you or a family member has a disability, you may qualify for Supplemental Security Income (SSI). However, if the eligible person receives more than $2,000 in assets they may be disqualified for a 5 year look back period. This can happen if a parent passes away and the disabled child inherits a small amount of money or assets and can be very difficult and costly for the eligible person.
By forming a Supplemental Needs Trust for the eligible individual, the Trust can receive settlement funds, gifts, and inheritance for their benefit without disqualifying the individual from their SSI benefits.
This is critical when receiving settlement money from a personal injury case, or to help your depending disabled adult child find their independence while still improving your child or parent’s quality of life.
We are here to help you determine if this is a good fit for you or your family.
To learn more or get started on your estate plan, just schedule a time to visit us for a no obligation complimentary consultation.
Probate is a court procedure which transfers property the deceased owned into the hands of his/her descendants or beneficiaries.
Probate has two functions, it gets creditors paid and it gets property owned by the deceased retitled to the land of the living. It also gives relatives and friends the opportunity to bring suits against those who claim your property.
Probate can take anywhere from 6-18 months, it varies depending on the size and complication of the estate.
If the deceased person had a will, the probate process is still required and involves the court validating that will. In the old days when someone died, you would have to get someone else to say “Oh yes! That is John Smith’s signature”. This is not how it works now, if you have two witnesses and a notary it is presumed to be valid. After the court verifies the will, the person’s assets are then transferred to his/her beneficiaries.
If the deceased person had a revocable living trust in place and placed his/her assets into the trust, the assets will not have to go through the probate process and will be disbursed by the trustee according to the instructions of the trust, not under the law of the state of Maryland.