At the present time, Special Needs Trusts (SNT) may be established by a parent, grandparent, Court or Guardian for a person with special needs under the age of 65 using that person's funds. This allows a persons whose assets exceed the Medicaid limits to have a SNT established for them and have the "excess" assets transferred into this SNT to continue to receive Medicaid benefits. The trust funds may be used to provide for many services and items uncovered by Medicaid. After the death of the individual, any remaining funds must be used first to repay Medicaid for benefits previously provided.
If someone with special needs does not have any surviving parent or grandparent, their only option is then to petition a Court for assistance - a procedure that can be very time consuming, expensive and humiliating.
The Special Needs Fairness Act which was introduced before the US Senate and on September 9, 2015 was unanimously passed. It permits an individual to create their own special needs trust without the needs for assistance of a Court, Guardian or other family member.
The bill has now been introduced into the House of Representatives and is scheduled before committee on September 18, 2015. It is hoped that it will soon pass and be signed into law placing people with special needs but with competency able to control their own future.
Contact our offices at Polizzotto & Polizzotto LLC for any Medicaid or Special Needs Trust issues which you may require assistance with.