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  • Herb Thomas

October is Down Syndrome Awareness Month

Down syndrome is a common chromosomal abnormality that affects nearly 1 in every 700 babies born in the United States each year. Because individuals with Down syndrome often require extra care throughout their lives, community and family support becomes essential. The right support can help someone with Down syndrome to live a healthy and fulfilling life. If you are the parent or guardian of a child with Down syndrome, you may be relieved to know that there are ways to help secure your loved one’s financial future with a special needs trust.

What is Down Syndrome?

Down syndrome, also known as trisomy 21, is a genetic disorder. It’s caused by a third copy of chromosome 21. Down syndrome results in a distinct facial appearance, and mild to moderate intellectual and developmental challenges. It may also be associated with thyroid or heart conditions. While interventions and support can benefit those with Down syndrome, the condition is lifelong. Individuals with Down syndrome may be faced with specific challenges, but with support and care they have the capacity and potential to contribute to society and lead fulfilling lives.

Plan For the Future

Proper planning is one of the most essential aspects to ensuring your child’s future safety and well-being. Most of us do immense amounts of planning on a daily basis, but it’s also necessary to plan for a future when we’re no longer able to be there for our loved ones.

Setting up a special needs trust for your child with Downs syndrome is one of the most significant actions you can take to safeguard his or her future. With a trust, you'll have peace of mind knowing that your child’s future financial needs will be met.

Why a Special Needs Trust?

One benefit of creating a special needs trust for your child is that it allows them to remain eligible for government benefits that could assist them throughout their life.

Once you prepare a trust, you'll designate a trustee (typically a family member, friend, or a professional fiduciary) to oversee the distribution of assets to the beneficiary.

It's possible to establish a trust that goes into effect upon your passing, but it may also be a good idea to set up a trust that goes into effect while you're still alive. This way, you can help to oversee the trust, and appoint someone to eventually take your place.

Qualified Fiduciary

Once your trust is prepared, it's important to work with an experienced fiduciary who has experience in overseeing special needs trusts in order to guide you through the process, making it as smooth and easy as possible. A qualified fiduciary can help you to determine your needs and can even act as a trustee for your special needs trust.

At Kairos Fiduciary, we are expertly qualified and have years of experience administering special needs trusts (SNT). Contact us at 510-749-8358 for more information about special needs trusts for individuals who have Down syndrome, as well as other special needs. We are proud to offer expert fiduciary services in the Alameda area.

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