2000 Conference Proceedings

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Planning For The Future of Your Special Needs Child

Layne Montesino
SNAP
Century City, CA

Did you know that there is a Federal Law which states that " If you leave a person with special needs anything over $2,000, that person loses eligibility for all government benefits?"

There are legal ways to protect against this $2,000 limit and specific financial ways to provide for a child’s lifetime care even if a family is not wealthy.


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  1. Introduction

  2. The purpose of this presentation is to educate both families and professionals of the many-faceted legal and financial issues as they pertain to planning for the future of a disabled person. This is otherwise known as Special Needs Estate Planning.
  3. Issues to be Addressed
    1. Legal Issues
      • Wills Vs. Trusts
      • Types of Trusts, including Special Needs Trusts
      • Letters of Intent
      • Guardianship Vs. Conservatorship
    2. Financial Issues
      • Appropriate Funding Options
      • Amount of monies needed depending on the situations.
      • The financial companies to choose from.
  4. Objectives (Learning Outcomes)
    1. Learn how to provide for your special needs child’s future without jeopardizing government benefit eligibility.
    2. Learn what the appropriate legal documents are, who should do them, and what they will cost.
    3. Learn what the appropriate funding vehicles are, how to find the best companies to work with and know just how much money is needed.

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Planning for the future of your children is hard enough. If your child has a disability, it is even more difficult. How will they be cared for after you’re gone? This session discusses special needs estate planning, or "estate creation" for those of us without any personal estate already. The presenter, a Certified Special Needs Advisor, is also a parent of a child with special needs. She knows first hand the maze of legal and financial information a parent must work through to feel confident that the future of their disabled child is secure. If proper planning is not done, the child will lose all eligibility for government benefits.


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