Entitlement Public Benefits vary from Needs-Based Public Benefits in that an individual’s resources and income are not considered for eligibility. These types of benefits are usually paid for with taxes from working or being employed. These types of benefits would not require a Special Needs Trust, and disbursements made from a Special Needs Trust would not interfere or impact the individual’s entitled benefits.

Entitlement Public Benefits include the following:

Social Security Disability Insurance (SSDI): The individual worker must be critically mentally or physically impaired as to not be able to perform any gainful work. In addition, the medical condition is expected to last one year or result in death.

Social Security Retirement: A monthly check for eligible workers who are of at least 62 years of age. This benefit will pay for worker’s eligible spouse, ex-spouse, and at times even a worker’s children. An individual worker must have worked and paid taxes on wages earned for approximately 10 years of work.

Childhood Disability Beneficiary Benefits (CDB): A child with a disability could receive a certain percentage of his/her parent’s social security check if the child was disabled before the age of 22. “The person has a disability that began after age 22 and that disability began before the close of the 84-month period following the month in which the child’s most recent entitlement to benefits as a CDB was terminated because the disability ceased (https://secure.ssa.gov/poms.nsf/lnx/0300203080, Social Security Administration).” These payments to child begin when the child’s parent is disabled, retires, or dies.

Medicare: Federal health insurance program for individuals who are age 65 or older, younger individuals with disabilities, and those with End-Stage Renal Disease. Medicare does not require income or resource limits.

Urbatsch, K., & Fuller, M. (2016). Administering the California special needs trust: A guide for trustees and those who advise them (2nd ed.). Bloomington, IN: IUniverse.