Select Text Size

News and Blog

Aug
09
2016

The Top Five Responsibilities of a Trustee of a Special Needs Trust

If you are considering taking on the responsibility of serving as the trustee of a special needs trust, you will probably have questions about the trustee`s role. Trustees of special needs trusts have many important responsibilities, but these five likely rank at the top of any trustee`s list.

Click here to read more...

Jun
15
2016

Spouses May Qualify for Early Social Security Benefits

When a parent of a child with special needs retires and begins receiving Social Security retirement benefits, her child may qualify for Social Security Disability Insurance (SSDI) based on the parent`s work record if the child`s disability manifested itself before the child turned 22 years old.

Click here to read more...

Jun
07
2016

Accounting Is Not Only Important - It`s Mandatory

Imagine how you would feel if you walked into your bank, asked for a summary of your account activity and the bank told you that it had no idea how much money was in your account or how it had been spent.

Click here to read more...

Oct
21
2015

Credit Card Care for People with Special Needs

A special needs trust is designed to supplement the income of an individual with special needs so that she can maintain access to government benefits without necessarily sacrificing her standard of living. But government benefits like Supplemental Security Income (SSI) and Medicaid prohibit the trustee of a special needs trust from simply giving a beneficiary cash to pay for goods and services herself. Instead, a trustee must pay vendors directly.

Click here to read more...

Sep
16
2015

Federal Website Expands Disability Information

The federal government has a vast storehouse of information on disability programs and services, but up until now it’s been a challenge to find what you’re looking for. Things just got a lot easier now that Disability.gov, the federal government`s portal for all things related to disabilities, has issued 14 guides that point people with disabilities and their family members towards an array of government benefits and programs. Visitors can quickly pinpoint information on how to apply for disability benefits, find a job, get health care, pay for accessible housing, and much more.

Click here to read more...

Sep
08
2015

Special Needs Planning Is a Marathon, Not a Sprint

Unlike some areas of law like "employment discrimination law" or "patent law," special needs planning does not focus on one specific legal principle or topic. Instead, it encompasses a broad array of subjects that people with special needs and their families encounter, from estate planning to government benefits to guardianship to advocacy.

Click here to read more...

Sep
07
2015

Legislation Attempts to Strengthen Mental Health System

Senators Bill Cassidy (R-La.) and Chris Murphy (D-Conn.) recently introduced legislation that would fund pilot programs for treating mental illness, encourage collaboration between federal agencies dealing with mental health issues and strengthen enforcement of mental health parity rules. The bill, which resembles a House bill introduced in the previous Congress, has been endorsed by a variety of organizations that assist people with mental illness, including the National Alliance on Mental Illness (NAMI) and the American Psychological Association.

Click here to read more...

Jul
13
2015

What to Do When Your Child Turns 18

The financial planning steps a family takes when their child turns 18 establish the foundation for the child`s support and well-being for the rest of the child’s life. If parents make the wrong decisions during this transition, the effects of those errors could affect the child far into the future, often when the parents are no longer there to care for the child. Therefore, it is essential that parents take extra care when planning for this crucial juncture.

Click here to read more...

Feb
06
2015

Should I Disinherit a Child with Special Needs?

Inexperienced or incompetent estate planning attorneys have a bad habit of telling parents of children with special needs to simply write their child out of their estate plan altogether in order to ensure that the child will qualify for government benefits if the parents pass away. While this approach might accomplish the goal of preserving government benefits, it is almost always the wrong way to help a child with special needs.

Click here to read more...

Feb
04
2015

College Savings for Students With Special Needs

Faced with the increasing cost of higher education, students and their families must begin saving for college from an early age -- often from birth. 529 College Savings Plans offer families a great opportunity to set aside money for a child`s college education, especially since funds held in 529 Plans grow tax-free. However, when a child with special needs is setting aside money for college, a 529 Plan may not be the best option. Here are some things to think about when family members ask about the best way to provide funds for a child with special needs` college education.

Click here to read more...

DISCLAIMER:The information contained in this website is based on Oregon law and is subject to change. It should be used for general purposes only and should not be construed as specific legal advice by Fitzwater Meyer Hollis & Marmion, LLP or its attorneys. Neither this website nor use of its information creates an attorney-client relationship. If you have specific legal questions, consult with your own attorney or call us for an appointment.