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Video: Special Needs Life Planning

Posted on March 29, 2021

Every parent, and especially a parent of a child with special needs, has to think about the future.

Who will take care of your child when you no longer can?

This video featuring Katherine Aquino-Melendez, a special needs planning attorney at the Cuddy Law Firm, explains key facts you need to know about special needs life planning.

Elements of special needs life planning include:

  • Your will
  • A living will
  • Advance directives on how you want future medical and financial decisions to be made
  • Guardianship arrangements for your child
  • A supported decision making plan that sets up a team to help your child make decisions
  • A special needs trust to keep assets your child inherits from disqualifying them from government aid programs
  • Life insurance
  • Updated beneficiary information in savings and investment accounts

Your life plan starts with a “letter of intent” explaining your wishes for how your child’s needs will be met after you’re gone. The letter is a guidepost for people making decisions about your child. It can be in written, audio or video form.

In the video, Aquino-Melendez also stresses the importance of updating documents such as your will.

You may need to add children born after you last updated your will. You may have appointed a friend or family member to be your child’s guardian who is no longer the right person for that role.

You can rest easier today if you know how your child will be provided for in the future, such as where they will live, who will make health care decisions for them, who will made educational decisions, and how there can be enough money to support them.

For more on guardianships and special needs planning from the Cuddy Law Firm, watch the full video.

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