Self-Settled Special Needs Trust

A Long Awaited Special Needs Trust

Amidst all of the post-election chaos, a long-awaited change in the availability of Supplemental Needs Trusts was signed into law. The Special Needs Trust Fairness Act , which was part of the 21st Century Cures Act, allows a disabled individual, who is under the age of 65 and has capacity, to set up their own Special Needs Trust. For over 20 years, federal law only allowed a parent, grandparent, guardian or the court to create these trusts. Many individuals who didn’t need a guardian and who did not have a living parent or grandparent, were forced to go to court to have a trust established for them to hold assets which would otherwise render them ineligible for their benefits, such as Medicaid and SSI.

This new law recognizes that individuals with disabilities can and often do have capacity to create a trust. It’s no longer necessary for someone else to create this kind of trust for them. Of course, these same individuals should already have in place General Durable Powers of Attorney and Health Care Powers of Attorney.

If you’re a disabled individual and you’d like to know more about setting up a trust, or doing any other kind of estate planning, just give our office a call.