Establishing a special needs trust can be an important step toward providing for your loved one while maintaining their access to important benefits. However, choosing the right trustee for that trust is just as essential. Who should administer the special needs trust you have established for your loved one?
Are they good with money and record-keeping?
Acting as a trustee involves keeping a variety of records, paying taxes and making financial decisions. Your trustee should have the financial skill to navigate those requirements and be detail-oriented enough to keep organized records for the trust.
Do they understand the benefits that your loved one relies on?
In order for a special needs trust to effectively protect your loved one’s government benefits, the trustee must navigate a variety of programs and regulations. The person you select must understand the rules surrounding those benefits and navigate those requirements to avoid jeopardizing the support they rely on.
Are they likely to outlive your loved one?
If you create a trust for a young person with special needs, they may have a long life ahead of them, and their needs might not be well served by a trustee who is late in life. The trustee you select should be able to serve for as long as possible.
How willing are they to do the job?
Acting as a trustee takes time and care, especially when simultaneously navigating regulations surrounding government benefits. The person you choose should be willing to take on that task and willing to seek professional guidance as needed to manage the trust.
Choosing the right trustee is one important way to ensure that a special needs trust provides your loved one with what they need.