Now that I know I need a Special Needs Trusts, the question is: What can I pay for with my trust? How and what you can purchase from your Special Needs Trust varies significantly based on what type of benefits you are eligible for several other factors not discuss in this post. This is meant to give you a general idea of what you can utilize the assets in your trust for.If you have Medicaid/Medical only  you may have your trust pay for any item including In-kind Support & Maintenance (ISM) items such as groceries, utilities such as, gas, electricity, water, sewer, heating fuel, garbage removal so long as you partially contribute to your bills.

If you currently have SSI In-kind Support & Maintenance (ISM) items such as groceries, utilities such as, gas, electricity, water, sewer, heating fuel and garbage removal, can be paid only if you elect to take a Presumed Maximum Value (PMV) reduction from your monthly Supplemental Security Income check. With a PMV reduction ISM items may be paid.  This is very helpful if your trust has significant assets, because your SSI can only be reduced based on 1/3rd of the federal rate of $783 plus $20 dollars. So if you can afford a reduction of a maximum of $281 dollars, your trust can pay for anything that is for your sole benefit.

Example: The Federal SSI Rate: $783 ÷ 3 = $261.00 + $20 = $281.00 Maximum Reduction to SSI.

Allowable Distributions

  • Clothing
  • Entertainment
  • Electronic equipment and accessories such as: telephone, television, cable, internet, satellite and wireless services
  • Visitation or vacation related expenses
  • Recreational activities
  • Hair, nail and other personal care
  • Supplemental needs such as:
    • Medications
    • Non-necessary medical care, services, and procedures
    • Special dietary supplements
    • Special equipment and clothing
    • Supplemental nursing care
    • Rehabilitative and physical therapy
    • Wheelchair, electric scooter and/or other mobility aiding equipment
    • Medical implants, artificial limbs, and orthotics and other similar items
    • Mechanical, electric or other special beds
    • Psychological services
    • Dental, ophthalmic or auditory care
    • Cosmetic surgeries
    • Experimental treatments
    • Alternative medical treatments and medications
    • Similar care which public assistance programs may not otherwise provide, including payments to those providing services in the home or other locations
  • Home improvements to make living environment more accessible
  • Stamps, writing materials and packaging materials
  • Special sports and social memberships
  • Prepaid burial space
  • Attorney, Care Manager and Guardian services and fees
  • Companions
  • Transportation
  • Motor vehicle – restrictions may apply to value of vehicle
  • Insurance premiums on personal property
  • Food and Shelter expenses may be paid, however they may result in a reduction or loss of benefits. Please speak to a qualified elder law attorney to understand how these types of requests may impact public benefits.

This list is not exhaustive. If you have a concern whether a request is allowable, please contact us before making a purchase.

CONCLUSION: This post is meant to provide a general idea of how useful and comprehensive  

DISCLAIMER The following forms are provided by CPT for informational purposes only and are intended to be used as a guide prior to consultation with an attorney familiar with your specific legal situation. CPT is not engaged in rendering legal advice, and this form is not a substitute for the advice of an attorney. If you require legal advice, you should seek the services of an attorney. © 2017 CPT All rights reserved.