If you have an adult child with special needs, you want to secure their future and their long-term care after you are gone. But what is better to provide for an adult dependent child: a will or a trust? There are advantages to both. A key difference is a special needs trust can be put in place now or at any time in the future, while a will goes into effect after your death. But what are the other pros and cons of a will versus a trust, and which one is right for your situation?
A Special Needs Trust provides funds but also allows disabled individuals to qualify for Medicaid but still have some funds for personal use. Parents who want to provide for the future of their special needs child need to take special care to not accidentally jeopardize their children’s eligibility for government benefits including Supplemental Security Income (SSI), Medicaid and other public assistance because of an inheritance. The trust holds your assets for the benefit of your child, and it is managed by a trustee. The terms of a trust are confidential.
The assets you bequeath for the care of an adult dependent child in your will can be transferred either directly to your dependent or indirectly through the custody of a guardian or caretaker. A will must go through the probate process so the estate can be settled, which costs time and money. Plus, a will is public information.
Creating a will or special needs trust for your adult dependent child can be confusing and overwhelming or confusing, but a special needs attorney can guide you through the process of choosing the best type of protection for your situation.
Do you have questions about protecting the future of your special needs child in Illinois? Our experienced special needs trust attorneys understand applicable laws and can advise you on the best options to protect your family. Contact the Estate & Probate Legal Group at 630-864-5835.
AREAS WE SERVE: Cook, Dupage, Kane, Lake, and Will counties