Special Needs Planning Lawyers in Texas Working Tirelessly to Serve Clients and Their Family Members
The world can be a frightening place for those with special needs. Our country is not always good at rewarding kids with a kind heart or adults who dare to ask for help. Whether you have special needs yourself or you are caring for someone who does, we know this can be very isolating sometimes.
You may be aware that there are social programs out there or government benefits that your family members may qualify for, but the process for applying can be needlessly complex and disheartening, especially when much of your time is spent caring for the individual’s special needs.
As gratifying as being the caregiver for someone with a disability can be, it is important that you understand you need not take on this role all on your own. There are services, programs, agencies, and professionals who have dedicated their careers to advocating for those with special needs. With their assistance, not only will you have some of the weight of the world lifted off your shoulders, but your loved ones should also, hopefully, benefit from more opportunities and enjoy a better way of life.
A Texas special needs planning lawyer could be an essential ally in your corner as you explore legal options for your loved one’s education, health care, day-to-day well-being, and estate planning measures to consider for the day when you are no longer here to care for them yourself.
At the Shields Law Firm, our lawyers and associates have years of experience both in helping families through the complexities of special needs law and in special education. If you retain the services of our firm, your attorney will provide assistance in determining eligibility for benefits from federal agencies, look into a child’s eligibility for education programs, and also provide knowledgeable legal advice for establishing a special needs trust and other forms of estate planning which may benefit you and your family.
Let us help walk you through the options you have to protect the rights of those with special needs in your life. Shields Law Firm operates throughout the state of Texas, with offices in Katy, Houston, and San Antonio. Contact our main office today at (832)-422-7333.
Does Your Family Member with Disabilities Qualify for Government Benefits like Supplemental Security Income?
Thanks in no small part to the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA), there are now numerous government benefits programs available across the country. However, eligibility can sometimes be difficult to determine, as the rules and requirements change depending on the age and the disabilities of the individual in question.
Persons living with disabilities who make only a small amount of money may qualify for Supplemental Security Income (SSI) from Social Security. If you’re a parent of low income who has a child with special needs, you may also qualify for SSI. Those who have SSI in Texas are automatically enrolled to receive Medicaid benefits. If you make too much money to qualify for SSI, there is a “buy-in” Medicaid option.
Medicaid also provides a certain level of medical services to those with special needs.
Other government programs, such as SNAP (food stamps), and Achieving a Better Life Experience (ABLE) savings account, Disabled Adult Child (DAC), and Social Security Disability Insurance (SSDI) can also be explored to see if they are well-suited to your needs.
For young people with special needs pursuing an education, there are laws in place that require that measures be taken to ensure equal opportunities for children with special needs. An attorney at our firm can assist families with securing an evaluation for an Individualized Education Program and the following ARD meeting.
Is Estate Planning an Essential Part of Special Needs Planning?
Everyone has an estate but very few take the time to organize a legally secure estate plan. It can be difficult to think about our own mortality sometimes. And, more than that, it can be almost impossible to think of our loved ones with special needs without us there providing love, care, and guidance. But there will come a time, and we know not when, that we depart from this world. Those who took the time to prepare their estate plan leave their loved ones with more financial security and fewer headaches after they’re gone.
A special needs planning lawyer at Shields Law Firm can help you with:
- A special needs trust can set aside assets, money, and property for your intended beneficiaries. These assets and trust funds can be distributed while you are alive and continue after you are gone. Unlike a will, a special needs trust does not enter the long, tiring process of probate court.
- Estate planning can name a legal guardian so that when you pass, this named individual assumes guardianship over the child with a disability or special needs.
- A Last Will and Testament names who you want to inherit your assets and property after your passing and can also handle complicated matters like outstanding debts.
Do You Need a Special Needs Trust Attorney to Create and Manage a Trust?
While basically everyone has an estate worth protecting, no one is required to go through the process of estate planning. However, it is recommended.
Unfortunately, like most things that make life easier in the long run, these matters are not always easy to establish, fund and manage. So, while you may not require the services of an attorney knowledgeable in matters relating to special needs trusts, such a well-educated advocate and professional could be enormously beneficial.
The legal team of Shields Law Firm has years of experience serving families and helping them with their special needs planning including, but not limited to, the creation of special needs trusts. If you have any questions or concerns, please do not hesitate to schedule a discovery call.
Schedule a Discovery Call
There are so many things to consider when managing care for someone with a physical disability or a serious mental illness and any other related developmental disabilities. But it’s important to remember that you don’t have to do this alone.
We serve clients with compassion in the creation of special needs trusts, establishing guardianship in estate planning, determining eligibility for Social Security resources, and more.
Contact us to schedule a Discovery Call today: