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Estate Planning and Elder Law


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Special Needs

Every child and family member is precious, however caring for a child with intellectual handicaps or helping an elderly or infirm parent presents special challenges.  Although the city, state and federal governments provide financial and other services, access to the specific programs that will assist the family of a special needs child or young adult (or the adult) facing skilled nursing care is limited by specific administrative rules and procedures.  Helping families and individuals find their way through the maze of regulations is a service which is close to our hearts.  Our son (brother) has a diagnosis of Rubenstein-Taybi Syndrome.  He has lived in the community and at home.  At various times he has received training services, work assistance, personal assistance, SSI, SSDI, Medicare and Medicaid.  He has lived in the community in a small group home, in a condo with supported living services and now lives in the family home receiving residential support services.

The members of our firm/family have successfully assisted our clients with Veterans Benefits, Social Security benefits, Medicaid applications and denials, and other matters involving governmental benefits.

The families with a special needs child or adult also need assistance with handling the funds received from such programs in such a way that they benefit the individual and do not interfere with other receiving supported services from other agencies.

Estate planning for these families is also important.  We listen carefully to the parents and siblings and help them plan wills and trusts which will give the kind of extra assistance to the handicapped child/adult, while protecting necessary benefits and still providing for all the family to share in the hard earned efforts of the parents.

Medicaid planning, in these days of exploding costs for assisted living and nursing home care, becomes an interest for older clients who anticipate that in their later years one spouse will require such care and the need to plan for limited resources to protect the spouse who will continue living in the community (called the community spouse).

To provide assistance to an elderly parent and help them remain independent for as long as possible (hopefully for their entire lives), too often an adult child must make drastic changes to their life and career.  “Life Care Plans” and “Life Care Trusts” can help protect the assets of the parent, provide compensation to the adult child for the sacrifices they make, and protect family assets for distribution at the death of the parent.

Let our family assist yours in making plans that protect both the individual needing care and the other family members who need assistance with providing care and making plans for the future.

Special Needs Trusts