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According to court documents, legendary singer Aretha Franklin did not have a will when she died, despite reportedly having a son with special needs. The lack of a will opens up the intensely private singer’s estate to public scrutiny and unnecessary costs, and means that there are no specific provisions to protect her son. Franklin, who died in Michigan at age 76, left behind four sons, but no guidance on how to distribute her estimated
Elder Law, Estate Planning, special needs planning
Trustees of special needs trusts generally have wide discretion in determining whether to distribute funds to trust beneficiaries. But if the person with disabilities receives Supplemental Security Income (SSI), careful precautions should be taken before any trust funds are used to pay for housing costs.  For the year 2018, federal guidelines set the maximum monthly SSI benefit at $750 for individuals, $1,125 for eligible individuals with an eligible spouse, and $376 for an “essential person,”
special needs planning, SSA, Uncategorized
Travel is sometimes necessary when a family has a child with special needs. Family members may need to visit the person with special needs, or a medical emergency may require travel to care for the loved one, or the family may simply want to take the child with special needs on vacation.  For years, the Social Security Administration (SSA) has placed strict limitations on when special needs trusts can distribute payments to family members for
special needs planning, SSA
As you know, the Tax Cut and Jobs Act (TCJA) is now officially law. Both the House and Senate passed the new tax reform bill in December with straight party-line votes and no support from Democrats. President Trump signed it into law right before Christmas. It is the first overhaul of the tax code in more than 30 years. It’s Good News for Most Americans Retirees, most of whom are on relatively fixed incomes, are
Elder Law

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