Taking care of their loved ones and protecting their assets are primary goals established by many Colorado families. In most cases, the traditional approach of saving for the future, making careful investments and structuring their estate plan in an effort to achieve these goals is the key. However, due to extenuating circumstances, some families discover the critical need for special needs planning in addition to the other more traditional forms of estate planning.
Parents of special needs children quickly discover the need for long term planning. While the child is a minor, there are various programs and support services available to assist with the child's care and education. There are also government benefit programs available; however, they are often based upon the individual's income. For this reason, many parents find it beneficial to establish a special needs trust on behalf of the child.
Once the child has reached the age of 18, it may also be necessary to take steps in order to be legally acknowledged as the special needs individual's guardian. In some cases, the individual is not capable of taking care of him or herself and making his or her own decisions. However, without proper guardianship established, the individual is legally considered an adult.
Parent of special needs children have a number of other estate planning issues to consider. In many instances, this Colorado family has a lifetime commitment of care. An experienced attorney can assist the family with their special needs planning to make sure that the child is taken care of even when the parents are no longer able to physically do so.