How to estimate the costs of care for a special needs adult

Having a child or grandchild with special needs means that you have to plan for their future in a way that most parents never do. In many cases, you can anticipate that the special needs individual in your family will outlive you, which means they will have a need for financial resources long after you're gone.

Instead of despairing over this issue, you can start planning now to provide a good quality of life and a safety net for a family member who is dependent on the care of others. The creation of a special needs trust with someone competent as a trustee is an ideal way to provide for a loved one long into the future.

What living situation do you expect them to have?

Determining how much money you need to set aside for a special needs loved one is going to depend, in no small part, on the living arrangements for that person. You may currently serve as the primary caregiver to your special needs child, which means that they live with you and you provide for all of their major needs, from transportation to community advocacy.

However, as you continue to age, you may no longer be able to fulfill those obligations. Are there other siblings in the family who would care for your special needs child? Are there members of your extended family who might do so, particularly if there is a trust in place that will pay them for their services?

Living in the family home will typically be more affordable and offer a better quality of life than living in an assisted living or adult foster care facility. Those facilities can cost thousands of dollars a month. It can also cost hundreds of dollars a day to bring skilled support staff into the home. You need to look at what you imagine the living circumstances will be and then calculate that cost over the rest of your child's life. Many times, the cost can be hundreds of thousands of dollars to provide residential care for someone for several decades.

You have options for funding a trust for a special needs family member

If the amount of money that it will require to support your loved one seems daunting, that doesn't mean your situation is hopeless. Far from it, in fact. There are many unique ways to fund a trust. For example, you can create a living trust that you begin to fund over the next few years. You can also have the balance of any retirement account left when you die immediately transferred into the trust. Proceeds from life insurance policies or the family home are also common assets used to fund a trust.

In some cases, you may also want to consider investing some or all of the funds intended for the special needs trust. In that scenario, the interest or annual payments from the investment would be what helps support your special needs family member, not the funds in the trust itself.

The exact condition of your loved one, as well as your age and current financial circumstances, will inform what amount you should plan to save and how best to allocate those funds. Partnering with an attorney who understands this complex but very important area of law in Georgia can help you make a plan that will protect your loved one even after you are gone.

No Comments

Leave a comment
Comment Information
Email Our Lawyers

Contact Us To Find Out How We Can Help You And Your Family

Call 866-253-6994 or fill out the form below to set up a consult with J. Kevin Tharpe to
talk about your wishes and ways he can help you accomplish your goals.

Bold labels are required.

Contact Information
disclaimer.

The use of the Internet or this form for communication with the firm or any individual member of the firm does not establish an attorney-client relationship. Confidential or time-sensitive information should not be sent through this form.

close

Privacy Policy

We have offices in Gainesville and Young Harris for your convenience.

Gainesville Office
405 Broad Street SE
Gainesville, GA 30501

Toll Free: 866-253-6994
Phone: 866-253-6994
Phone: 770-503-1022
Fax: 770-531-5511
Gainesville Law Office Map

Gainesville Office

Young Harris Office
1352 Main Street, Suite 1
Young Harris, GA 30582

Toll Free: 866-253-6994
Fax: 770-531-5511
Young Harris Law Office Map

Young Harris Office