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Where to start research on a future trust?
Old 10-01-2018, 10:54 AM   #1
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Where to start research on a future trust?

Hello, I had a trust question and thought I would ask for advice.

I have a friend in his early seventies who has a special needs child that wants to set up a trust to provide income after he passes. The child (early twenties) is on the autism scale but fairly functioning (in college now) so this is not a daily needs situation-more of a safety net and to provide long-term supplemental income.

I am going to WAG the estate will be in the 1-1.5 million range. He mentioned maybe splitting the assets between 2 companies/trusts, with a law-firm to audit annually.

I did some searching and have a few resources/websites to give him but figured this would be a great place to ask as well. I am not looking for a solution-just advice to pass to him on where he can start his due diligence.Any suggestions would be appreciated!

Gresh
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Old 10-01-2018, 11:04 AM   #2
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It's a start.

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Old 10-01-2018, 11:08 AM   #3
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1) No rush on this. Just tell your friend that he needs to get it done and signed by the day before he dies or becomes incapacitated.

2) Special needs trusts are very arcane territory. The issue is to structure the trust so that its existence does not reduce any of the government benefits that the beneficiary may be entitled to.

This is not a nolo.com/Quicken Willmaker type undertaking and state laws may vary. Getting a truly expert attorney will cost him maybe one half of one percent of his estate value. Pretty cheap insurance.
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Old 10-01-2018, 11:12 AM   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Gresh View Post
Hello, I had a trust question and thought I would ask for advice.

I have a friend in his early seventies who has a special needs child that wants to set up a trust to provide income after he passes. The child (early twenties) is on the autism scale but fairly functioning (in college now) so this is not a daily needs situation-more of a safety net and to provide long-term supplemental income.

I am going to WAG the estate will be in the 1-1.5 million range. He mentioned maybe splitting the assets between 2 companies/trusts, with a law-firm to audit annually.

I did some searching and have a few resources/websites to give him but figured this would be a great place to ask as well. I am not looking for a solution-just advice to pass to him on where he can start his due diligence.Any suggestions would be appreciated!

Gresh
NOLO has some good books that cover the basics of trusts and estate planning. They also offer some DIY products, but this is one area where (IMO) it pays to use an attorney. Your friend will need to decide if he wants to leave a special needs trust. Vanguard offers trust management services at a price that is likely much below that of other trust mgmt services.
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Old 10-01-2018, 11:24 AM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by OldShooter View Post
1) No rush on this. Just tell your friend that he needs to get it done and signed by the day before he dies or becomes incapacitated.

2) Special needs trusts are very arcane territory. The issue is to structure the trust so that its existence does not reduce any of the government benefits that the beneficiary may be entitled to.

This is not a nolo.com/Quicken Willmaker type undertaking and state laws may vary. Getting a truly expert attorney will cost him maybe one half of one percent of his estate value. Pretty cheap insurance.
My only slight quibble with the above is that your friend might want to start with the nolo.com books on the subject, before seeking out a professional.

I agree that a pro is probably required to deal with a case like this, but the nolo books can get you grounded, so you can talk intelligently with the pro.

-ERD50
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Old 10-01-2018, 01:51 PM   #6
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Thanks for the replies so far. I know my friend will NOT be setting this up himself without an attorney. This is just for him to get enough basic information that he can make intelligent decisions when he brings a professional in.
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Old 10-01-2018, 02:20 PM   #7
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I am not looking for a solution-just advice to pass to him on where he can start his due diligence.

Any suggestions would be appreciated!
Advise your friend to talk with a good estate attorney, perhaps one that specializes in special needs trusts.

This is not a DIY situation.
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