What Can My Special Needs Trust Pay For Without Affecting My Disability Benefits?



Video Summary

What can my special needs trust pay for without affecting my disability benefits? Well, that's kind of a twofold question. First and foremost, your special needs trust would really determine what your trustee of your trust could essentially spend for your benefit, if you're the beneficiary, so if you're the person with the special needs with respect to your benefit. A lot of times special needs trust will specifically say that the trustee can expend funds for the beneficiary's benefit with respect to things that are not covered by the government entitlement programs, so things such as necessary, so things above and beyond the regular medication that you're getting through government entitlement programs.

A good example of that would be therapy devices. In the instance where, let's say, you have Medicare because of your special needs, Medicare is currently paying for a basic wheelchair. Let's say, hypothetically, you need a motorized wheelchair or you need a wheelchair that is very specific to your disability. If you're Medicare premium will not cover that, then your special needs trust does generally allow the authority for your trustee to expend sums of money for things such as that wheelchair, because again, that's going to be for your benefit. That's not going to supplement the actual entitlement that you're getting from Medicare, i.e. the benefit, but it's going to exceed that benefit. That is a really good example of something that would be able to be covered.

A lot of times special needs trusts also have provisions that allow for the trustee to expend sums of money on things such as vacations, things such as continuing family contact for the beneficiary. That would allow for plane tickets, travel, things like that. That way this person, i.e. the beneficiary, the person with the special needs, would be still able to maintain their standard of life with respect to keeping connections with their family and things of that nature.

Those are just some of the examples with respect to things that your trustee can do and expend on your behalf with respect to your special needs trust that will not affect entitlement to your government programs. If you have any other questions on special needs trust, please give me a call here at Waller & Mitchell, at 727-847-2288