A Cautionary Tale for Parents of Children with Special Needs

A parent of a child with Special Needs must take special care when preparing an estate plan. Special Needs Trusts are often recommended to ensure that an inheritance will assist a child with special needs without negatively affecting government benefits. Sometimes a parent will choose to forgo a Special Needs Trust in favor of an informal arrangement with surviving siblings. (ie. All the money will be left to the healthy child, Sharon, to care for the child with special needs, Sarah.) The risks of such an informal arrangement are numerous. Using the names from our example above:

• Sharon could… Read the rest

Special Needs Trusts in Ohio- Trusts Funded with a Disabled Person’s Own Funds- Why is it Used & Trust Options

Why it is Used

Special Needs Trusts are trusts established for disabled individuals under the age of 65. The goal of the trust is to hold funds that the disabled individual may have received from settlement, inheritance, or earned or received prior to the onset of a disability to improve quality of life without effecting eligibility for programs like Medicaid, SSI or SSDI. Funds in a special needs trust can be used for extras like:

• Attendance or participation at recreational or cultural events;
• Travel and vacations;
• Participation in hobbies, sports or other activities;
• Funds for special… Read the rest

Nursing Home Admissions- Things to Look Out for Before Signing the Agreement

The nursing home admission process can be immensely stressful for both the prospective resident and her family. During this difficult period, it is easy for the parties to overlook the complex language of the nursing home admission agreement. This, however, would be a mistake. The agreement is legally binding on the signor, creating serious financial obligations to the nursing home. Careful review is necessary to ensure that the resident’s legal and financial interests are protected.

The Ohio Department of Aging has warned families against unlawful or unfair provisions in admission agreements.… Read the rest

Attorney Elizabeth L. Perla to Speak for Trust Professionals

Cleveland attorney Elizabeth L. Perla has been chosen by the National Business Institute to speak at their “Trusts 101” Seminar in Cleveland, Ohio on June 19, 2014 on the topic of Ethical Considerations. She will cover the issues of ‘Who is Your Client?’, ‘Confidentiality in Third Party Communications,’ ‘Assessing the Client’s Capacity,’ and ‘Avoiding Fraudulent Transfers.’ The seminar is designed for attorneys, financial planners, accountants, tax preparers, trust officers and paralegals. The program will be recorded in its entirety and can be obtained by contacting NBI directly.… Read the rest

What is the Putative Father Registry?

A woman is pregnant, you may be the father but you’re not married.

A woman has given birth to a child, you think you’re the father, but you haven’t yet established paternity.

If you fall into either of these categories, you should consider registering with the Putative Father Registry.

The Ohio Putative Father Registry is a database that allows a man to register if he believes that he is the father of a child, whether born or unborn. Once registered, the father must be notified if the child is put up for adoption.

Failing to register puts the possible father in risk of having his child given up for adoption… Read the rest