Ways to Fund Special Needs Trusts
 – Presented by Mark K. Lund, Financial Planner

A look at the different choices & strategies.

If you have a child with special needs, a trust may be a financial priority. There are many crucial goods and services that Medicaid and Supplemental Security Income might not pay for, and a special needs trust may be used to address those financial challenges. Most importantly, a special needs trust may help provide for your disabled child in case you’re no longer able to care for them.

Remember, using a trust involves a complex set of tax rules and regulations. Before moving forward with a trust, consider working with a professional who is familiar with the rules and regulations.

In preparing for a special needs trust, one of the most pressing questions is: when it comes to funding the trust, what are the choices?

There are four basic ways to build up a third-party special needs trust. One method is simply to pour in personal assets, perhaps from immediate or extended family members. Another possibility is to fund the trust with life insurance. Proceeds from a settlement or lawsuit can also serve as the core of the trust assets. Lastly, an inheritance can provide the financial footing to start and fund this kind of trust.

Families choosing the personal asset route may put a few thousand dollars of cash or other assets into the trust to start, with the intention that the initial investment will be augmented by later contributions from grandparents, siblings, or other relatives. Those subsequent contributions can be willed to the trust, or the trust may be named as a beneficiary of a retirement or investment account.1,2,3

When life insurance is used, the trustor makes the trust the beneficiary of the policy. When the trustor dies, the policy’s death benefit is left to the trust.1,2,4

Several factors will affect the cost and availability of life insurance, including age, health, and the type and amount of insurance purchased. Life insurance policies have expenses, including mortality and other charges. If a policy is surrendered prematurely, the policyholder also may pay surrender charges and have income tax implications. You should consider determining whether you are insurable before implementing a strategy involving life insurance. Any guarantees associated with a policy are dependent on the ability of the issuing insurance company to continue making claim payments.

A lump-sum settlement or inheritance can be invested while within the trust. With a worthy trustee in place, there is less likelihood of mismanagement, and funds may come out of the trust to support the beneficiary in a measured way that does not risk threatening government benefits.

Care must be taken not only in the setup of a special needs trust, but in the management of it as well. This should be a team effort. The family members involved should seek out legal, accounting and a financial planner who is well versed in this field, and the resulting trust should be a product of close collaboration.

If you ever have any questions about your investments or retirement plans, please feel free to give me a call at 801-545-0696.

 

Citations
1. WSJ.com, June 3, 2021
2. SpecialNeedsAnswers.com April 12, 2021
3. SpecialNeedsAnswers.com July 3, 2019
4. SpecialNeedsAnswers.com October 2, 2019

This information should not be construed as investment, tax or legal advice and may not be relied on for the purpose of avoiding any Federal tax penalty. All information is believed to be from reliable sources; however we make no representation as to its completeness or accuracy. All economic and performance data is historical and not indicative of future results. Market indices discussed are unmanaged. Investors cannot invest in unmanaged indices. The publisher is not engaged in rendering legal, accounting or other professional services. If assistance is needed, the reader is advised to engage the services of a competent professional. This material was prepared by MarketingLibrary, Inc., for Mark Lund, Mark is known as a Wealth Advisor, The 401k Advisor, Investor Coach, Financial Advisor, Financial Planner, Investment Advisor and author of The Effective Investor. Mark offers investment advisory services through Stonecreek Wealth Advisors, Inc. a fiduciary, independent, fee-only, Registered Investment Advisor firm providing investment and retirement planning for individuals and 401k consulting for small businesses. Mark’s newsletter is called The Fiduciary Report. Cities served in Utah are: Salt Lake County, Utah County, Park City, Salt Lake City, Murray, West Jordan, Sandy, Draper, South Jordan, Provo, Orem, Lehi, Highland, Alpine, American Fork.

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About the Author ()

Mark K. Lund is the author of The Effective Investor, a #1 Best Seller, and founder of Stonecreek Wealth Advisors, Inc. an independent, fee-only, Registered Investment Advisory firm. He has provided articles for or been quoted in: The Wall Street Journal, The Salt Lake Tribune, The Enterprise Newspaper, The Utah Business Connect Magazine, US News & World Report, and Newsmax.com, just to name a few.  Mark publishes two newsletters called, “The Mark Lund Growth Report” and “Mark Lund on Money.”  Mark provides CPE (continuing professional education) courses for CPAs.  You may also have seen him on KUTV Channel 2, or as a guest speaker at a local association or business. Mark provides investment and retirement planning services for individuals and 401(k) consulting for small businesses. In his book, The Effective Investor, Mark exposes the false narrative magazines, media, big Wall Street firms, and most advisors want you to believe. The good news is that Mark will show you that you don’t need their speculative ways of investing in order to be a successful investor. Get a free copy when you schedule your initial consultation.

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