Do Most Estate Attorneys Handle Special Needs/Supplemental Needs Trusts?
No. That is definitively a no. A lot of times you will have an attorney, a family attorney, a general lawyer that the client will walk into his office and say “Mr. Attorney, you did my house closing last year, 10 years ago, and I want you to prepare my will”, and that attorney will probably do that, and will be able to prepare a will. But, he might not have a clue what to do with the child who has special needs, or how Medicaid works, or how disability payments work for disabled persons or how it will be lost by getting an inheritance left to them improperly done in a will.
What Are Some Questions To Ask When Retaining An Attorney To Set Up A Special Needs Trust/ Supplemental Needs Trusts?
Do they know how Medicaid works? That is really the biggest key. Do they know how Social Security Disability payments work for people that suffer from disabilities? Those are really the two biggest things that the lawyer has to be familiar with in order to be considered someone who knows what they are doing with special needs planning. They have to be well-versed in that area of the law, because those are the issues that are at stake when an inheritance is to be left to a disabled person.
It is being able to do the proper estate planning for a family that has children with special needs so that they can be provided an inheritance, and have the ability to not lose their governmental benefits.
You want that disabled person to get the best of both worlds. You want them to be able to have assets to provide for their needs, but you also do not want those assets to disqualify them from getting Medicaid and, or their monthly disability income payments that they are receiving from the federal government. You do not want them to lose those benefits. You want them to have the best of both worlds. That is really what the client needs to understand, and obviously that is what the special needs planning lawyer needs to know how to do.
What Makes You Particularly Suited To Establish Special Needs Supplemental needs Trusts?
You really have to be experienced in this field. The general practitioner, or the family lawyer, or real estate lawyer, or even the “estate” lawyer, or estate planning lawyer, if he is not familiar with Medicaid and not familiar with governmental benefits and governmental income benefits that are paid to people with disabilities, they are not a specials needs planning lawyer. There is a difference. That is really what sets me apart. You have to be familiar with Medicaid and with governmental benefits for the disabled.
You may have an estate planning lawyer who knows how to handle death issues, but he might not be well versed in how Medicaid works and does not know what happens when a disabled person inherits money or assets or what happens when a person gets sick and elderly and needs to qualify for nursing home care or community Medicaid.
That attorney may hold himself out to be an estate lawyer and an estate planning lawyer, but he is not a Medicaid lawyer or special needs planning lawyer or an elder law attorney which are all very different from a regular estate lawyer. That estate lawyer might know how to handle death issues and what happens if you die, but he may not know how to handle leaving an inheritance to a person who is disabled, and is on Medicaid.
Similarly, you may know of an elder law lawyer who is well versed with how elderly law works. He or she must be fully aware of how to handle and take care of the needs of the elderly. An elder law attorney is different from an estate planning attorney, who is different from a Medicaid planning lawyer. For each of these jobs, you need a specific type of attorney. Whether you are looking for a special needs lawyer in New York, an elder law lawyer, an NY probate lawyer, or an estate planning lawyer, you can trust The Law Offices Of Michael Camporeale P.C. We have highly experienced lawyers, to take care of your needs.
Estate planning for people who have children with disabilities is very different then the planning done for others, because the planning for children with disabilities requires the lawyer to be versed in Medicaid law and other governmental benefits and programs and how they are affected by inheritances.
I am well-versed in Medicaid law, which is important because if you are going to be a special needs planning lawyer, or elder law attorney, you need to know Medicaid law and disability law.
Medicaid law and disability law is very different from just knowing what happens at death as an estate lawyer. They are two different worlds. The general practitioner, or estate lawyers that do not know how Medicaid works and are not familiar with Medicaid law and are not Medicaid lawyers should not be doing this type of work.
That is why the proper planning by the proper lawyer is very important. To get in touch with an estate planning attorney, an NY probate lawyer, an NY Medicaid planning attorney, an estate planning lawyer, an elder law lawyer, or an elder law attorney in New York, give us a call at The Law Offices Of Michael Camporeale P.C. Our lawyers are highly experienced and they understand how to set up a special needs trust, how to do estate planning, how elder law works, and how to fill out a health care proxy form.
For more information on Handling Special Needs Trusts, a free initial consultation is your next best step. Get the information and legal answers you are seeking by calling (718) 475-9639 today. We have offices located in Staten Island, New York, Brooklyn, Bronx, White Plains, Garden City, Melville, NY.
Get your questions answered - call me for your free phone consultation (718) 475-9639