Having a loved one with special needs means understanding the complexities involved in providing care and support in these circumstances. While every situation is unique, any person supporting a family member with special needs should try to provide protections for their dependant as part of their overall estate plan.

Our experienced and highly skilled estate lawyers are adept at understanding the considerations involved in this type of planning. We will work with you to gain a full appreciation of your individual circumstances in order to explain your obligations and options when it comes to planning for your loved ones with special needs.

Special Needs Planning and the Succession Law Reform Act

The law imposes a legal and moral obligation to provide for any dependants through their estate after death. If you fail to do so, that dependant is entitled to bring a claim for dependant support against your estate within six months from the issuance of a Certificate of Appointment of Estate Trustee. In this circumstance, a dependant is defined as a spouse, a child, a parent or a sibling, and can include an adult dependant to whom you were providing support before your death.

Trusts for Special Needs Planning in Halton Region

There are several factors that can complicate providing for a loved one with special needs. In some cases, the loved one may not be in a position to manage their own affairs, and may require someone to oversee their finances on their behalf. Alternately, leaving a lump sum or high-value asset to a person receiving benefits under a government support program may have the effect of disqualifying them from these benefits if their personal wealth reaches a certain level.

For these reasons, establishing a trust is often the best way to establish protections and support for a loved one with special needs (this type of trust is commonly known as a “Henson Trust”). Our lawyers have considerable experience in designing customized trust plans for their clients that are suited to each client’s individual set of circumstances.

Contact Sweatman Law to discuss special needs planning at our Oakville, Milton or Georgetown offices

To discuss your special needs planning options with an experienced and skilled estates lawyer, please contact us online in order to arrange a consultation.