A Special Needs Trust or Supplemental Needs Trust (SNT) is a Trust designed to "Supplement" the assets of a person receiving government benefits such as Supplemental Security Income (SSI) and Medicaid. Some of these services and expenses that can be paid for by the SNT include out-of-pocket medical expenses not otherwise covered through governmental benefits, vacations and hobbies of the person receiving government benefits. There are many complex issues involved in establishing the particular Supplemental Needs Trust that best suits a client’s plan. Our Paramus attorneys will assist you in establishing a SNT to suit your needs.

There are several reasons a Special Needs Trust might be appropriate. Below are 3 circumstances where a SNT might prove beneficial:

In New Jersey an individual receiving SSI and/or Medicaid is only allowed to have $2,000 in assets (with some exceptions). If this person were to receive money from an inheritance or a lawsuit it would jeopardize these benefits. By placing these funds into an SNT it could increase this person’s standard of living and assure they would still be eligible to receive their government benefits.

Setting up an SNT is often a better choice then giving the assets (either in your will or outright) to someone else in order to provide for a loved one receiving government benefits.

Funding a SNT for the benefit of a disabled child or grandchild can be a very effective Medicaid planning tool. Medicaid will allow for such a transfer without imposing a penalty period before Medicaid will pick up the cost of your care, so long as the beneficiary of the SNT is under age 65.