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I'm getting a settlement for $38,000 in assets I am disabled…

Customer Question
I'm getting a settlement...

I'm getting a settlement for $38,000 in assets I am disabled I am blind with glaucoma if I left leg was fractured in two places in the accident and I receive SSI I'm trying to preserve my SSI so I can use the funds for things that I need

Lawyer's Assistant: Does the disability limit any major life activities?

I'm only allowed $2,000

Lawyer's Assistant: Has anything been filed or reported?

No not as yet I have the papers to sign for the settlement but I'm being cautious of signing them before I proceed with anything

Lawyer's Assistant: Anything else you want the lawyer to know before I connect you?

Yes I just want to preserve my medicare SSI food supplement but I need a way how to preserve the settlement

Submitted: 11 months ago.Category: Legal
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Answered in 6 minutes by:
8/3/2017
Lawyer: KLAW, Lawyer replied 11 months ago
KLAW
KLAW, Lawyer
Category: Legal
Satisfied Customers: 2,354
Experience: I have over 20 years of experience in commercial real estate law, finance, consumer credit, landlord tenant, and business law.
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Good morning. I am a legal expert attorney who will assist you today.

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Customer reply replied 11 months ago
I need some answers concerning this situation because my lawyer is calling it to then I'm able to refer him to Special Needs Trust
Lawyer: KLAW, Lawyer replied 11 months ago

Hello and welcome to Just Answer. No attorney-client relationship or privilege is formed by speaking to an expert on this site, the answers are for general information. By continuing, you confirm that you understand and agree to these terms.

It is correct that if you are on SSI (Supplemental Security Income) disability benefits then any settlement you receive will be counted as income to you in the month received and as a resource in subsequent months until spent down per Social Security rules. To avoid this, the funds would need to go from the other party to your attorney or a trust attorney who then puts the funds into a Special Needs Trust - the rules for these trusts are tricky and Social Security has very specific rules about how they are set up and administered - so if you need one of these be sure to consult with an attorney who has experience with them so that it is done correctly.

If the trust is properly established and administered, the injured plaintiff can continue to remain eligible for public benefits, such as SSI and Medicaid, and benefit from the use of the personal injury settlement. If the trust is not established, then the personal injury recovery is a countable asset for determining eligibility for such programs as SSI and Medicaid, and these benefits are lost. Assets in the Special Needs Trust are not counted. The income does not count for means-tested public benefit purposes, as long as income from the trust is distributed directly to third-party providers of goods and services and is not for food and shelter. If income is used for food and shelter, the SSI benefit is simply reduced by a maximum of one-third plus $20. Medicaid eligibility is unaffected.

So yes you need to set up a special needs trust. Ask your attorney about an Individual or D4A special needs trust. There are also pooled special needs trusts available.

I hope this helps.

It was a pleasure assisting you today, and I would appreciate if you would rate my service, so I will receive credit and payment for my work. After you rate the question you can ask follow up questions, and you will not be charged any additional money for the follow-up questions.

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Lawyer: KLAW, Lawyer replied 11 months ago

Let me know if you have any other questions.

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DISCLAIMER: Answers from Experts on JustAnswer are not substitutes for the advice of an attorney. JustAnswer is a public forum and questions and responses are not private or confidential or protected by the attorney-client privilege. The Expert above is not your attorney, and the response above is not legal advice. You should not read this response to propose specific action or address specific circumstances, but only to give you a sense of general principles of law that might affect the situation you describe. Application of these general principles to particular circumstances must be done by a lawyer who has spoken with you in confidence, learned all relevant information, and explored various options. Before acting on these general principles, you should hire a lawyer licensed to practice law in the jurisdiction to which your question pertains.

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