Working with a special needs lawyer in Houston to create a trust for your child or other individual is an important part of preparing for that person’s future. In order to make sure that the special needs trust stays relevant to your needs, however, it is important to review it annually. At this point, you are able to reflect on any changes that have taken place in your life or that of your loved one so that you can update the trust to reflect those changes.
During this annual review, you will want to ask some questions to evaluate whether or not any changes need to be made to the special needs trust, your estate plan, etc.
1. Have there been any changes to the law that affect the effectiveness of the trust? This is a question that you will likely want to go over with your special needs lawyer, as he or she will be current on legal trends that would need consideration.
2. Have your assets changed? The purchase of property or other major change in assets should be considered when reviewing the trust. You want to be sure that all of them are properly titled and that they are accounted for in your estate plan.
3. Does the plan still fit the need? When major changes come up, they can necessitate changes in the special needs trust. For example, perhaps there is a new medical treatment that has become available for your loved one. If your original plan does not meet the costs for continued care, it may be time to amend your original trust.
4. Have you named the best trustees? Life circumstances change, and someone who was named as a trustee at one point may no longer be the right choice. Whether health or life changes have impacted someone’s ability to perform the task, an official change must be made to the special needs trust.
5. Are you still able to act as your loved one’s advocate? While parents typically serve as their child’s advocate, there are times when this becomes a less desirable option. If this person is in poor physical health or is beginning to suffer from dementia, for example, it is very important to discuss this with the special needs lawyer in Houston to find an alternate advocate.
There are other changes that would also bring about the need to make modifications to a special needs trust. Making a point to meet annually with your special needs lawyer in Houston provides the opportunity to talk about those you recognize and possibly to uncover those you did not even realize would have an impact.