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Principled Advocacy For Families And Individuals With Disabilities And The Professionals Who Serve Them

Can a pour-over will protect your special needs family member?

On Behalf of | Apr 19, 2024 | Estate Planning

For those with a special needs family member, a well-crafted estate plan is essential. Including a special needs trust can help to safeguard your relative’s eligibility for government benefits while offering supplemental support.

But what happens if you die before adding assets that you want to include in the trust? This is where a pour-over will can be invaluable, acting as a safety net to ensure your loved one receives their inheritance as you intended.

A pour-over will can bridge the gap

Sometimes, unforeseen circumstances can put a pause on your trust funding efforts. You may plan to resume, but if those assets remain outside the trust when you pass, they may be inaccessible to your loved one. If your special needs relative inherits those assets outside the trust, it could disqualify them from crucial government benefits. A pour-over will catches left-out assets, pouring them into the trust automatically.

Bypassing probate for a smoother transition

Probate court can be a lengthy and expensive process and could be a hardship for someone with special needs. A pour-over will can eliminate the need for probate because it sends your uncaptured assets directly to the trust.

Enduring peace of mind

As you can see, a pour-over will can minimize the risk of unintended consequences that could disrupt your loved one’s care and stability. Knowing that they will continue receiving excellent support even after you are gone can give your entire family immense peace of mind.

Nothing is more important than the vulnerable members of your family. A pour-over will is one way to help safeguard their interests when you’re gone. Someone knowledgeable about Illinois’ estate and trust laws can help you figure out which strategies make sense for your unique circumstances.