If you are the parent of a child with special needs as I am, you know that one of our greatest fears is how our children will be taken care of when we are no longer able to do so ourselves. Even worse, our fear only becomes greater as our children get older and we do too.

The range of disabilities which may impair our children and adults to the point where they are unable to support themselves is vast, and includes both physical and mental impairments. These individuals, our disabled children, may need to depend on government benefits to provide for their financial needs, but frequently end up living below the poverty level.

Worse, entitlement to government benefits often depends on a means test. To receive SSI and Medicaid, disabled people must limit their income and assets. Any financial assistance given to our children for food and shelter will reduce even these limited financial benefits.

Fortunately, there is a way parents and grandparents can grant some relief and provide stability and security to our children without jeopardizing these government benefits that are so important for our children, through the creation and use of Supplemental and Special Needs Trusts.

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