5 unforeseen expenses that ruin retirement

Supporting a special needs child
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Supporting a special needs child

If you have a special needs child who will depend on you after you retire, making provisions for that child should be a major priority in your retirement plan.

Some potential financial relief comes when a disabled child turns 18, at which point his or her eligibility for Social Security income is no longer restricted by how much his or her parents earn. Adults with a disability diagnosed before age 22 also are eligible for Social Security Disability Insurance benefits, based on the retired parent's Social Security earnings. The adult child is not required to have worked to receive those benefits.

One of your priorities will be to ensure that your special needs child will be taken care of after your death. Motz says the options include setting up a trust or purchasing a permanent life insurance policy whose proceeds can be used for the child's needs. But beware of leaving any such assets in the child's name.

"You can disqualify a child for Social Security and Medicare if they have too much in the way of assets, so it's really important to work with an attorney who has a specialty in special needs planning," Motz says.




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