A major part of special needs planning is preserving eligibility for government aid. This includes understanding what programs are available and how they can assist your loved one. It also means you need to understand how inheritance and asset transfers may affect their benefits. Our North Carolina Special Needs Planning Lawyers can help you navigate the complexities of government programs so that your loved one and his or her benefits are secure.
Medicaid is an important government program for covering medical costs and long-term care. It provides significant care benefits to people who cannot always care for themselves. However, Medicaid recipients must have limited assets and a low income to qualify.
By planning in advance, you can make sure that your special needs loved one has access to resources while not exceeding the Medicaid requirements. This can include moving assets to special needs trusts. Special needs trusts are allowed by Medicaid and can provide specific care and benefits to the beneficiary while preserving benefits under Medicaid. A Special Needs Trust Attorney can help you determine your options for helping your loved one qualify for and maintain Medicaid benefits.
Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP)
SNAP is a government program that assists disabled people with the cost of food. SNAP is available to low-income households and can be given to an individual. It’s an important tool for planning for the health and well-being of a loved one with special needs.
The asset and income limits on SNAP are strict, so it’s important to understand how the benefit may be affected by any asset transfers to your loved one. Special needs trusts are subject to certain rules under SNAP, and the trust may disqualify an individual for SNAP if it doesn’t meet certain requirements. A Special Needs Trust Lawyer can help you structure any asset transfers or create trusts to make sure that your loved one is not disqualified for SNAP.
Supplemental Security Income (SSI)
SSI provides income to people with disabilities and special needs. However, SSI requires that individuals have very low amounts of assets and very low or no income. Any planning that incorporates SSI must carefully determine any asset transfers to the person with special needs.
Social Security Disability Insurance (SSDI)
SSDI provides income to disabled individuals who have paid taxes over the years. This program is an important part of special needs planning because it provides income to people who may have become disabled later in life. SSDI benefits are based on factors such as age and the number of years worked.