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Do you have a plan for after a child with special needs turns 18?

| Nov 30, 2020 | Estate Planning, Guardianships & Conservatorships |

Watching your child grow and mature can be very rewarding, especially as they grow ever-closer to adulthood and start making decisions that will shape their future lives. Unfortunately, if you have a child with special needs, their increasing age can also be a cause of increasing concern for you.

Your legal authority to make medical decisions and handle the finances for your child will theoretically end when they turn 18. The closer they are to that age, the more you need to consider whether they can live independently or if they will need your help to handle the basics indefinitely. If your child can’t manage their own money, they may not be ready to become a legally independent adult yet.

For those who will need assistance with managing their own household or providing for themselves, a guardianship may be necessary once they reach adulthood.

A guardianship empowers you to continue providing care

A child with significant special needs may never be able to truly live independently, but they may be able to thrive with the right support. As a parent, you can do everything in your power to foster their independence and happiness while still ensuring they have the care and support they need for their own safety.

You can seek a guardianship as their parent or possibly work with someone else, like an older sibling, to help them secure a guardianship. Provided that you can show that your child’s condition prohibits them from completing the responsibilities of adulthood, it is possible that the courts will agree that it will be in your child’s best interests to have someone else managing their affairs.

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