Case Study 4

Providing for the Care of a Disabled Child

Barbara and Mark, a married couple in their mid-50s, received a large inheritance from Barbara’s aunt. Their first thought was to use the money to make sure that their 24-year-old son, Philip—who has been disabled since birth and is unable to care for himself—would be provided for after they were gone. But they had some additional concerns.

Philip’s disability qualified him to receive monthly payments from two government entitlement programs: Medicaid and Supplemental Security Income. If part of the inheritance was transferred to Philip’s name, however, he could lose his eligibility for continued payments; the assets would then have to be spent down to less than $2,000 for him to re-qualify.

Barbara and Mark turned to SunTrust for wealth preservation strategies. Their Private Wealth Management advisor introduced Barbara and Mark to a trust specialist on the team who, along with an outside attorney, created a special needs trust for Philip, funded by a sizable portion of the inheritance. SunTrust then assumed responsibility for investing the assets on Philip’s behalf.

This solution created a wealth preservation plan for the trust assets whereby the money would be available for Philip’s care and needs throughout his lifetime, without jeopardizing his government entitlements.

Disclaimers

SunTrust Bank and its affiliates and the directors, officers, employees and agents of SunTrust Bank and its affiliates (collectively, “SunTrust”) are not permitted to give legal or tax advice. While SunTrust can assist clients in the areas of estate and financial planning, only an attorney can draft legal documents, provide legal services and give legal advice. Clients of SunTrust should consult with their legal and tax advisors prior to entering into any financial transaction or estate plan. Because it cannot provide legal services or give legal advice, SunTrust’s services or advice relating to “estate planning” or “wealth transfer planning” are limited to (i) financial planning, multigenerational wealth planning, investment strategy, (ii) management of trust assets, investment management and trust administration, and (iii) working with the client’s legal and tax advisors in the implementation of an estate plan.

These materials are educational in nature. The implications and risks of a transaction may be different from individual to individual based upon past estate, gift and income tax strategies employed and each individual’s unique financial and familial circumstances and risk tolerances.

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