They are in the process of making decisions about the best way to handle their son's financial situation. Trevor is 21 and has developmental delays.
I spoke to our Regional Center worker this morning about conservatorship
for Trevor. He said that we really don't need to bother with it!
Because mainly it is for consumers who are very high functioning, and
mobile and independent, who might sign papers they shouldn't or make
other unwise decisions. This was also the conclusion that we came too.
We currently have 100% control over all of Trevor's affairs, without
being accountable to or being supervised by any government agency, ie:
the court or "friends of". Regional Center would help us with a
conservatorship for free as one of their services, but we say "why open
Regarding the other issue of Special Needs Trust...a trust is necessary
for the "consumer" in the event of the death of both parents. The first
step is to establish a Living Trust so that your estate will not go into
probate court. Within the Living Trust is a Special Needs Trust for the
disabled child. This way the child can receive an inheritance without
compromising his government benefits. Without the trust the child would
be forced to "spend down" his inheritance to nothing and then try to get
back into the system for the "bennies". This keeps the disabled person
in a constant state of poverty. With the Special Needs Trust in place,
the person's income and most importantly the medical benefits remains
SSI is Federal money (I think) and is for food, clothing and shelter. The
state provides for medical, vision and dental ( which is through MediCal
here). Regional Center for the Developmentally Disabled provide
educational and employment services, transportation and respite services
(just to name a few). I have to say here, that Regional Center has been
very good for us and a huge help when we wanted it. It has been our
experience, that their workload is too intense for them to take the time
to hassle us, even if they wanted to!
We currently have a fantastic worker, who has dispelled much of the
apprehension that I previously had.
I know how you folks feel about the government money. But without the
help Trevor's situation would be a financial burden, not only for us but
on his siblings after we are gone. At one time, I felt a little guilty,
but our worker reminded me that these services are what the taxpayers
voted on and want for this population with special needs. I am grateful
to live in a country that makes such provisions for the least fortunate.
Ok, Ok I'll get off the soap box now :)
Anyway, that's all I've got for now......
Love you guys! -Deb