Melnik Law Group, PLLC

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Supplemental Needs Trusts Attorney

What is a supplemental needs trust in New York?

A supplemental needs trust is a type of special needs trust and it is made in order to ensure that disabled beneficiaries are fairly treated once their caretakers or guardians pass away. These trusts are very beneficial in making sure that the property intended for the beneficiary is given to them the way it should and on top of that there are fiscal advantages. This trust is basically and inheritance for the disabled beneficiary. Supplemental needs trusts avoid the loss of government benefits for the recipient of the trust. The assets in the trust are not counted when it comes to qualifying for benefits such as Supplemental Security Income (SSI), Medicaid, subsidized housing, and many others. This trust just provides excess care on top of the governmental care of the disabled beneficiary. If you are looking to create a trust for a loved one you need legal guidance from a New York estate planning lawyer from our firm.

How to Fund the Trust

The supplemental needs trust and be funded in several ways, including:

  • Money from IRA or plan accounts
  • Assets given through wills
  • Gifts from the parents of the beneficiary
  • Purchasing life insurance and including the supplemental needs trust as a beneficiary of the insurance
  • Grandparents of other relatives giving gifts or leaving money in their wills to the trust

This is an irrevocable trust which cannot be modified or terminated without the permission of the beneficiary so the different methods of funding are ways to adjust the plan. These plans are meant to provide for the living expenses of the disabled person when the benefit programs from the government are not substantial enough to provide for their needs.

Requirements for a Supplemental Needs Trust

There are requirements in place before a trust can be titled a supplemental needs trust, including:

  1. The beneficiary must be a person with a disability before the creation of the trust
  2. The beneficiary must be diagnosed by a medical professional who is qualified to diagnose disabling conditions
    1. Have to be diagnosed as mentally or physically ill
    2. Has to be a condition lasting for 12 months or more
    3. Another licensed professional has to confirm the diagnosis
  3. The trust has to be established by a third party not including the disabled person or their spouse
  4. The beneficiary cannot be the trustee
  5. Trustee can be parents, siblings, relatives, friends or an outside professional but not the spouse of the beneficiary or the beneficiary themself
  6. The trust has to prohibit the use of assets to replace public benefits that are already available

Are you looking for an attorney to help with your supplemental needs trust in New York?

If you have a disabled child or want to create a trust for a disabled beneficiary seek help from a New York estate planning lawyer. Our attorneys at Melnik Law Group, PLLC are familiar with the process of creating trusts to protect loved ones. Call our firm today to schedule a free initial consultation!

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Melnik Law Group, PLLC - New York City Estate Planning Attorney
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