16
Apr

1
Man fingers setting trust button on highest position. Concept image for illustration of high confidence level.

Funding a Special Needs Trust

Two of the most often-asked questions I receive is “How much do I need to fund my child’s trust with?” and “How can I fund a trust for my child when I don’t have the money now?”  Let’s address each question individually, starting with the second. Most people don’t fund their child’s Special Needs Trust […]

06
Mar

0
MOLST Medical Orders

THE MOLST BLACKHOLE

One of the best-kept secrets when it comes to guardianship and end-of-life decisions is the MOLST and the OPWDD checklist.  I was recently sucked into the MOLST black hole when I attempted to implement end-of-life decisions for my brother, Scott.  As his legal guardian, I thought I had the authority to implement Do Not Resuscitate […]

05
Feb

16

The Gift

Many years ago my parents received a gift that they never asked for. My mother grieved for six months when she discovered that her youngest child, Scott, had been born with Down syndrome. It was routine for doctors in 1961 to advise parents to place such infants in an institution so that they did not […]

02
Jan

0

Advocacy In a Nutshell

What happens when you are no longer around to care for your disabled child?  As you get older, this question becomes increasing relevant and, for many parents, a serious problem. If you are elderly and your child has been living at home, the question as to who will care for your child can become extremely […]

07
Jun

0

APPLYING FOR SSI/MEDICAID FOR MY SPECIAL NEEDS CHILD

Approximately 66% of disability claims are being denied at the initial claims level.  Considering the importance of Supplemental Security Income (SSI) and Medicaid to a special needs child and the new pilot program governing the appeals process in New York, some parents may want to consider enlisting a Disability Specialist to help in the process. […]

01
Mar

0

HOPE

“Of all the forces that make for a better world, none is so indispensable, none so powerful, as hope.  Without hope people are only half alive.  With hope they dream and think and work.” –Charles Sawyer Does special needs planning diminish hope?  Does it create artificial boundaries or set a ceiling on what your special […]

09
Feb

0

WHAT IS SECOND-TO-DIE INSURANCE?

  Second-to-Die Life insurance, sometimes known as Survivorship insurance, is a type of permanent life insurance which is frequently used to fund a special needs trust (SNT). Characteristics of Second-to-Die insurance: It is permanent life insurance. It can be either Whole Life or Universal Life (UL). The most common type is UL.  All the big […]

03
Feb

0

WHY USE LIFE INSURANCE TO SECURE YOUR CHILD’S FUTURE?

  How can you be guaranteed to make a small fortune?  Answer:  Start with a large fortune and then invest poorly.  Fortunately, life insurance does the opposite.  You can take a relatively small amount of money and convert it into a larger pool of money–guaranteed.  The caveat is that you have to die first.  Eventually, […]

06
Oct

0

YOU ARE YOUR CHILD’S GREATEST ASSET!

In a different age and under vastly different circumstances, the late Chinese leader Deng Xiaoping once talked about crossing a raging river by “feeling the stones underfoot.” All of us— agencies serving the developmentally disabled, parents of children with special needs, and even the politicians—are in that river now, trying to feel the stones in […]

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