The pooled trust: Making sure your money goes the distance

Pooled Trusts are a type of Special Needs Trust (SNT) that ensures you or your loved one has the financial resources required to meet their needs without jeopardizing eligibility for government provided benefits. Earnings from work or income may not always be adequate to meet a disabled person’s needs.  Pooled Special Needs Trusts are a way that people with disabilities can retain money from settlements, inheritance, excess funds or money from loved ones while not jeopardizing their government benefits such as SSI or Medicaid.

Special Needs Trusts authorized by OBRA 193 (Omnibus Budget Reconciliation Act) are known as Pooled Special Needs Trusts. WGC operates two types of Pooled Trusts:

  •  Third-Party Pooled Trust
    • Allows parents, grandparents or other third parties to leave funds for the person with a disability without losing or endangering their government benefits
    • Assets are pooled from participants to yield a higher investment
    • More affordable than other trust options
    • Enrollment and fees vary depending on the amount of funds placed in the trust
    • Upon death of the disabled beneficiary, the remaining funds can be disbursed according to the grantor.
  •  First-Party Pooled Trust
    • Disabled individuals can place money in this trust rather than “spend down”
    • Generally funded by excess funds, settlement proceeds, inheritance or back payments from Social Security.
    • Assets are pooled from participants to yield a higher investment
    • More affordable than other trust options
    • Enrollment and fees vary depending on the amount of funds placed in the trust
    • Upon the death of the disabled beneficiary, the Trust retains the first $25,000 for disabled individuals in Wyoming to use in emergency situations.  Then, Wyoming Medicaid is repaid a percentage of the assets remaining in the individual trust account.
    • Must be under 65 years old.
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