Special Needs Planning Case Study: A Teen Boy Who Became Disabled

Young man on a wheelchair with laptop

Tom and Judy, residents of North Texas, were very proud of their son Dylan. He was an independent 16-year-old who had just passed his driver’s test. Tom and Judy trusted Dylan and his driving ability. However, they were nervous about other drivers being careless and jeopardizing their son’s safety. Sadly, not long after he got the keys, Dylan was involved in a serious car accident that caused him to suffer a debilitating traumatic brain injury. 

Tom and Judy were grateful that Dylan survived the crash, but they felt overwhelmed about planning for his future. Will he finish high school? What about college? He had suffered significant neurological damage and needed a caregiver. They wondered if Dylan could receive government benefits with his disability. While thinking long-term, Tom and Judy had many questions and concerns, such as “Who will take care of our son once we’re gone?”

Tom and Judy found themselves struggling with how to plan for their son’s future as an adult. So, they contacted our special needs planning lawyers for guidance. Read on as the Davidson Law Group explains how Tom and Judy secured the immediate and long-term future of their child.

Step 1: The Parents Met With an Attorney

First, our attorneys acknowledged the complexity of Dylan’s case. Tom and Judy faced many challenges, including Dylan’s health care coverage and costs, custodial care, and education expenses. We helped identify what programs were available to Dylan so the family could take full advantage of them. The government benefits included Medicaid and Supplemental Security Income (SSI).

Step 2: They Set Up a Special Needs Trust

Next, Tom and Judy wanted to leave assets to Dylan through a will. However, they knew that his inheritance could prevent him from continuing to receive government benefits after they passed. We helped Dylan’s parents set up a special needs trust so he could keep receiving public benefits while also inheriting the family estate. 

Related Post: Common Questions About Special Needs Trusts

Step 3: They Chose a Trustee

After Tom and Judy contributed the funds, they chose a close family friend to serve as trustee. This person will administer the special needs trust, pay taxes, keep records, and supervise Dylan’s needs. By planning a course of action, Tom and Judy felt better knowing that they were doing everything possible to enhance their son’s life. They knew Dylan would be cared for, now and in the future. 

Related Post: An Estate Planning Attorney Discusses Minor Children 

Let a Special Needs Planning Attorney Help

Special needs planning can be stressful, and it requires a vast amount of knowledge and organization. The Davidson Law Group can help make the process easier for you. Contact our lawyers in Fort Worth, Allen, or Tyler today.