Portsmouth NH Special Needs Trust Attorney

Parents of children with developmental disabilities that will not be able to work and support themselves as adults can provide for their children in the future with special needs trusts. This special type of trust allows families of all economic means to leave money to help provide a better quality of life for their child without endangering their very important social security and Medicaid benefits. You can find more information on special needs trusts here. Our firm can help you develop a comprehensive estate plan that includes a special needs trust for your child with special needs to ensure resources for their care long into the future.

Your child may also need guardianship after they turn 18, when you, the parents, can no longer make decisions for them or even access educational and medical information without your child’s permission. Our firm can help families in Rockingham county and Stratford county apply for and present the necessary evidence to a Court to obtain an order of guardianship. Some of your questions about guardianship are answered here.

The best way to get answers to your questions and see if we can help you is to give us a call or send an email. We love to chat with families about their needs, and we promise you will learn something you didn’t already know when you talk to us. 833-RED-BOOT (833-733-2668) or legal@parkercounsel.com

Plano Special Needs Trust Attorney

A special needs trust is part of a comprehensive plan parents need to have in place to ensure that their child with a disability is well cared for to the end of their life.

If your child has a developmental disability that prevents them from caring for themselves as an adult, they may be eligible for SSI (supplemental security income) and Medicaid. But those benefits are only available to people with disabilities who have little income and few assets, so parents must use a special needs trust to leave money for the care of their child after the parents are gone. This involved creating a trust and then preparing a will that directs the child’s inheritance into the trust. You can read more about the basics of the special needs trust here.

At age 18, you may also need to seek guardianship for your child. We can help you apply in Dallas County, Tarrant County, Collin County, and Denton County for guardianship. You’ll find answer to common Texas Guardianship questions here.

And of course, the best way to get more information is to give us a call. We’re happy to chat on the phone or by email about your situation to see if we can help you out with your legal needs. 833-RED-BOOT (833-733-2668) or legal@parkercounsel.com

Ask the right questions about fiduciaries

One of the most difficult parts of estate planning is choosing the people you will name as your fiduciaries – that is, the people who will carry out your business.  The word fiduciary involves trust, and a fiduciary is a person who you trust to carry out the task for which you have named them.  In estate planning, you will name people to not only to handle your will, but also to handle your financial affairs in the case of your disability, to make medical decisions on your behalf if you are unable to do so, to take care of your children if you die, and possibly to take care of the money and property that you leave your children while they are minors or if they are disabled.  While you do need someone you can trust in all those roles, there are other factors that are important as well.

If you are lucky enough to have enough family and friends to have to make choices, in addition to the question “who do I trust” you should also ask the following questions to help you determine the best choices for your various fiduciaries:

  • Who cares about my child?
  • Who understands and respects my wishes?
  • Who knows when to ask for help?
  • Who is happy to hear suggestions from other people?
  • Who is careful about recordkeeping?
  • Who is good with money?
  • Who would step up to help even if you didn’t ask?

These and other questions like them will help you think through the people in your life and figure out who the best matches are for the various fiduciary roles in your estate plan.  If no one fits the bill, your attorney can help you figure out how to either provide extra support for your fiduciaries, or point you to professionals who can fill the roles.

Parker Counsel Legal Services serves families in Central Texas,, the Dallas Metro area, Western Massachusetts, Northern New Jersey, and the New Hampshire Seacoast with special needs estate planning, special needs trusts, and guardianships. Contact us for a consultation at 833-RED-BOOT (833-733-2668) or legal@parkercounsel.com

Keep your estate and special needs plan up to date

Review your retirement, investment, and trust accounts

We help families in Texas, Massachusetts, New Jersey, and New Hampshire plan for the future of their child with special needs, and part of that planning means knowing what you have. We recommend you periodically review all your accounts and assets to

  1. Make sure you remember what you have (as nice as it is to “find” money in the state unclaimed property lists, it’s better not to lose it in the first place)
  2. check the amount you have in it
  3. review whether you have a beneficiary named on the account and whether it is the correct beneficiary for your plan
  4. make sure that your property and any beneficiary designations still match your overall plan

Make a list of your current assets, their amounts, and the beneficiaries. If you need to make any changes, make an appointment with your financial planner or attorney to go over your situation.

Review your will, power of attorney, medical documents, and trust documents

After you take a look at what you own, take a look at the documents you have to take care of that property, both before and after your death.

  1. Are your fiduciary agents still the right people?
  2. Have there been any weddings, births, divorces or deaths that require changes to your plan?
  3. Have you moved to another state or had a significant change in your assets?

If you need to make changes or have questions about any of the changes in your life, make an appointment to see your attorney to make sure your plan is up to date and still does what you want it to do.

Parker Counsel Legal Services serves families in Central Texas,, the Dallas Metro area, Western Massachusetts, Northern New Jersey, and the New Hampshire Seacoast with special needs estate planning, special needs trusts, and guardianships. Contact us for a consultation at 833-RED-BOOT (833-733-2668) or legal@parkercounsel.com

Dallas Texas

Parker Counsel has added an attorney to our staff to serve families in the Dallas area. We can help with estate planning and special needs trusts to make sure your child with special needs remains eligible for medicaid after your death.

We can also help with obtaining guardianship of your child once they turn 18 – if you live in Dallas County, Denton County, Collin County or Tarrant County we’re ready to help you protect your child.

Contact us at 833-RED-BOOT (833-733-2668) or legal@parkercounsel.com to find out what we can do for you.

How NOT to use Special Needs Trust Money

Special needs trusts are simple and yet oh so complicated, like almost everything devised by the government. They are a wonderful tool for parents and others to provide money to use for a disabled child while protecting the child’s eligibility for Medicaid and SSI (social security benefits). They can hold any amount of money and that money can be used to supplement the benefits received from the government and thereby, it is hoped, enhance the quality of life of the individual.

The money cannot ever, however, be used to pay for items that the benefits are intended to cover, without causing some reduction in, or sometimes loss of, the benefits. This includes things like:

Cash given directly to the beneficiary for any purpose

Food or groceries

Restaurant meals (except if given as an occasional gift)

Rent or mortgage payments

Utilities such as electricity, gas, and water

Utilities hookup or connection charges

On the other hand, a special needs trust CAN make contributions to an ABLE account, and the ABLE account CAN be used to pay for many of the items the Trust cannot pay for. See? Simple and yet complicated all at the same time.

Parker Counsel Legal Services can help you understand how to use special needs trusts and ABLE accounts together in a well designed plan to provide for the future needs of your child with a special need. We serve families in Texas, Massachusetts, New Jersey, and New Hampshire. Contact us for a consultation at 833-RED-BOOT (833-733-2668) or legal@parkercounsel.com

Special needs planning blueprint





This checklist keeps you organized as you work through creating a plan to care for your child with special needs in the future. Broken into sections that track the Four Keys System we use with our clients, this Blueprint will let you dive in wherever you can without missing items you need to come back to.

Get the Planning Blueprint

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    People and Money – How to Prepare for Lifelong Care for Your Special Needs Child

    people and money product shot (1)It’s overwhelming to think about, we know.  But we have a system and can walk you through the four key areas of planning that will create a system to care for your child no matter what the future may bring.   We will help you, step by step, put together a community of caregivers, maximize financial supports, create transition tools, and nail it all down with the proper legal documents.

    Start with a free phone conversation.  Find out what you need to know.  Find out how we can help.  Find out how to put your plan together.  Step by step.  It’s easier than it seems.   Call us (413) 203-9358  or email legal@parkercounsel.comstart-1063441_1280

    How to Rock a Blue Moon

    Blue moonIt’s January.  The full moon is January 2 . . . and then on the last day of the month, January 31, we have a second full moon, a Blue Moon.  You know some things only happen once in a Blue Moon, so this month we are celebrating the somewhat rare occurrence of the Blue Moon by encouraging folks to engage in another fairly rare event: the making of a will.

    If you don’t have a will, you’ve got plenty of company.  About 60% of adults in the US don’t have one, according to a survey by Caring.com.   Not surprisingly, the percentage of people who do have a will increases with age, but since you have about a 15% chance of dying before the age of 50, having a will earlier rather than later in life is the best choice.  And since the younger you are the less likely you are to have a will, that means that people who have young children are very likely to have no will or any other documents to protect their children if the parents die.

    Why don’t most people have a will?  Of those who don’t have one, the number one answer as to why (47%) was that they just hadn’t gotten around to it.  In other words, they had no reason, they simply had not done it.

    If you have children, and especially if you have a child with a special need who will never be fully independent, there should be more of a reason to avoid providing for their future care than simply “I haven’t done it yet.”  Whatever your reason for not facing this, we can find a way to overcome it.  The Law Office of Pamela Parker is committed to helping families prepare for the future of their children with special needs, whatever it takes. Tell us what is holding you back, and we’ll help you move around that block.  Under the Blue Moon, anything is possible.

    To celebrate the Blue Moon this month, we’ll be posting a new version of either “Blue Moon of Kentucky” or “Blue Moon” every day on our facebook pages:   Texas Residents  Massachusetts Residents

    Check it out – and send us a note at legal@parkercounsel.com  or give us a call at 512-804-9934 or 413-203-9358 to rock this Blue Moon with your own estate plan.

    Family Educational Series: Planning for the Future of Children with Developmental Disabilities

    man-person-cute-young You love your child more than anything, even though their special needs can sometimes make life more tiring, more complicated, and more frustrating than your neighbors’ lives.  It can also make your own life more stressful, because unlike your neighbors, you may need to take care of your child to the end of their life, even though you probably won’t live that long!  There is a way to care for your child from beyond the grave . . . do you know how?family-outdoor-happy-happiness-160994

    The Law Office of Pamela Parker is providing the following online educational seminars free of charge to residents of Western Massachusetts, including Amherst, Northampton, Springfield, and other areas of the local community. These seminars will help parents of children with developmental disabilities learn about and navigate current and future legal needs. As a parent of three children with disabilities, Attorney Parker is committed to helping families of all backgrounds help plan for their children’s future needs.   With the opening of her Amherst office under the supervision of Attorney Hallie Hughes, she brings a proven formula to even more families who will now be able to address the most troublesome worry of all: What will happen to my child when I am gone?

      All seminars are free and available online – if you can’t join us at the live time, all registrants will be sent a link to watch the replay at your convenience.   Register Nowpexels-photo-532389

    1. Basic Support for Individuals with Developmental Disabilities:

    Social Security and Medicaid

    Seminar: December 19 at 12:30 pm

    2. Additional Issues, Open Q&A January 2, 12:30 pm


    3. Family Contributions for Future Support of Individuals with Developmental Disabilities: Special Needs Trusts

    Seminar:January 16 at 12:30 pm

     

    4. ABLE Accounts, Sources of Funding, Use of Funds in a Special Needs Trust:

    Seminar/ Open Q&A January 30 at 12:30pm

    5. Day to Day Care and Assistance for Individuals with Developmental Disabilities:

    Guardians, Trustees, and Other Personal Care Helpers

    Seminar: February 13 at 12:30pm
    6. Additional Issues/Open Q&A: February 27 at 12:30pmbrothers-boys-kids-baby-50601

    Register Now