Financial Help

for Our Kids

How do we go about getting financial help for our [child] with Asperger’s in the future when he graduates high school and we are no longer around for him?

For parents of children with Asperger’s, financial help and the future security of their child are major concerns.  It can be difficult for parents to meet the financial needs when their children are young, even though they are able to work to support the family.  The idea of retirement and death can cause parents to fear for their child’s future.  What will happen to their child with Asperger’s Syndrome when they are too old to work or when they die?

Depending on the severity of the child’s Asperger’s, financial help can come from a variety of sources.  Developing a plan now for the child’s future is wise.  Some sources of aid will come into effect when the child reaches the age of independence.  Others sources of aid can be implemented right away, depending on the condition of the household income and assets. Here are some examples that may help you plan for the future.

  • Once your child reaches adulthood, he can apply for services and grants through the state’s developmentally disabled program. These programs provide dependent living and group housing arrangements, work training and job assistance programs, and transportation services. Most services require the individual to meet certain levels of disability to qualify. Grants may cover anything from medical equipment to clothing and nutritional supplements. These grants have less strict disability qualifications.
  • The state Department of Human Services offer Medicaid insurance coverage and SNAP food benefits to no or low-income individuals. Applications can be printed from the state website or picked up in person at the DHS office.
  • Severely affected individuals may qualify for disability payments through the Social Security Administration. Proof of eligibility includes medical records to prove disability and financial documents to determine household worth.
  • Family members can create a special needs trust to protect the child’s inheritance. Money held in a trust is not considered income when applying for help from state and federal programs.

When planning for the future of your child with Asperger’s, financial help through inheritance can be tricky to negotiate. Find an attorney who has experience with special needs families and ask about setting up a special needs trust. This attorney should be able to guide you to the best solution for your unique circumstances. He or she can also advise you on applying for various state and federal programs. Securing your child’s future in the event of your death is a loving and noble act. Your child is blessed.

About the author
Dave Angel
is a social worker in the U.K. who founded and runs www.parentingaspergerscommunity.com. Since 1998 Dave has worked with hundreds of families who have had children (and adults) with special needs (both young and old) and have a special interest in Asperger’s and ASD. He is the author of the “Parenting Aspergers Resource Guide” E-book (Volumes 1 and 2) which is a handbook for parents of children with Asperger’s Syndrome.

This article has been reproduced here with the author’s permission.
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