Theresa M. Varnet

Estate Planning for parents with a dependent who has a disability is a complex process. Most parents find it difficult to even contemplate their death and, as a result, planning can be an upsetting experience for families. It is not unusual for parents to feel either too young to consider estate planning or to feel they have so few assets that this type of planning is applicable to them.

You need not be wealthy or old to begin seriously considering the need to write a will and a supplemental or "special needs" trust if you have a family member who needs government benefits to ensure that he or she receives the acre and support necessary over a lifetime. But in order to do this, you must plan carefully. A special needs trust remains the only estate planning option that avoids the loss of assets meant to supplement your son or daughter's life and allows the donor to preserve the remainder balance for family members or charities.