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When a child suffers a life-changing serious injury, the immediate focus is on recovery and the physical well-being of the child. As time passes, though, it becomes important to start to plan for the long-term care and support to ensure the child is able to grow and thrive despite having special needs. Thankfully, there are some options to help achieve this goal.

One such way to help save for a child’s future is through a special needs trust. This financial trust has some of the same general elements as other trusts – there is a trustee who manages the assets for the benefit of the beneficiary – but it is specifically designed to help ensure the child maintains eligibility for important government programs. These can include Supplemental Security Income and Medicaid.

There are some important considerations to take into account when looking to establish this type of trust. For example, the type of account may vary depending on the goals or desires of the trustor; it could be a high-yield savings account or even an investment account. There are also some details to look for, such as minimum balance requirements, account fees and the APY.

Once the account is active, assets and funds can be actively placed into the trust. Aside from cash, assets like stocks, CDs, mutual funds, and IRAs can be also be placed into the trust. Ultimately, the trustee is the one who controls the trust, not the beneficiary, so it’s important to ensure whomever is assigned as trustee has the best interests of the beneficiary in mind.

Special needs trusts can be a great way to help save for the expenses a child will incur during their future, particularly as a way to help those who have suffered serious injury recover and reach their potential. However, there may be some legal questions involved in establishing and managing the trust to ensure it is best suited for an individual’s goals. In such cases, it may be helpful to seek the guidance of an experienced attorney.