If you are hesitant about starting your future planning now, here are five reasons not to delay. Even if you have just learned that your child has special needs, it is never too early to make a plan.
- There’s No Time Like the Present
Right now, your family may feel secure and happy. All of your child’s medical needs are met, you have good health insurance, and you are starting to save for retirement. Doing your future planning now, while everyone is happy and healthy, will be so much less stressful than doing it in a time of crisis. You do not want to find out after the fact that you gave your child too much money in the wrong way, disqualifying him or her from important government benefits. Also, you do not want to wait until your child runs into a financial or personal problem to get a power of attorney or guardianship. There is no time like the present, when everything is good, to get your planning done.
While most parents do not pass away before their children are well past 18 or even 30, grandparents often pass on when their grandchildren are young. Therefore, planning now to establish a special needs trust so that grandparents can name that trust as a beneficiary or even as a contingent beneficiary will ensure that your child’s future government benefits are protected. In fact, grandparents leaving an inheritance directly to a grandchild with significant disabilities are probably the most common problems we have to solve that can be avoided if the parents plan ahead while the grandparents are still alive.
- Planning for the worst
While most parents do not pass on while they have young children it can happen, and in those cases having done the special needs future planning now will ensure that if that happens the child will still be eligible for government benefits when they turn 18.
- Take Advantage of Programs and Services
When you speak to a lawyer about future planning, he or she can alert you to programs and services that could help you and your child. Often these services are little-known or hard to find, and you (or your child) might need to meet income requirements or other qualifications. Once you know how to use them, they can significantly improve your and your child’s quality of life.
- Peace of Mind
Finally, the most important reason to start future planning today is to give you peace of mind. Once you sign all the paperwork and file it away, you can breathe a big sigh of relief that your family and your child are prepared for the future. Talk to a knowledgeable attorney with experience in future planning for people with special needs about making your plan today. Last, remember to update your plan after major life changes.
Rubin Law is the only law firm in Illinois exclusively limited to providing compassionate special needs legal and future planning to guide our fellow Illinois families of children and adults with intellectual disabilities, developmental disabilities, or mental illness down the road to peace of mind. For more information, email us at firstname.lastname@example.org or call 866-TO-RUBIN.