A Special Needs Trust document will provide a trustee specific instructions in providing for the beneficiary. Generally, the trustee has sole discretion in making distributions for the “health, education, maintenance and support” of the beneficiary. Typically that means that the beneficiary can receive a distribution to help maintain an accustomed standard of living. However, the trustee must be careful to avoid providing unlimited funds at the risk of depleting trust assets or damaging other benefits. Primarily, income from other sources along with government benefits should be considered when making an important distribution decision to ensure funds and eligibility are protected.
If you are in the process of creating a trust document, make sure your document is explicit in the instructions it provides to the trustee on making a distribution to the beneficiary. This will protect the funds as well as avoid putting the trustee in an awkward position when making tough decisions.
Please feel free to contact a Golden Financial Services advisor with specific questions or concerns about your Special Needs Trust document or trust administration.