What benefits do Arizona special needs trusts protect?

By May 18, 2011Uncategorized

We talk a lot on the blog about how Arizona special needs trusts protect public benefits.  And while this is absolutely true, it might be helpful to use a little specificity.  For purposes of clarification, we will talk about the specific public benefits that Arizona special needs trusts can protect; namely SSI, AHCCCS, and ALTCS.

Arizona special needs trusts preserve SSI eligibility.

Supplemental Security Income (SSI) is a federal program that is designed to help aged, blind, and disabled individuals, who have little or no income.  SSI provides a cash benefit so that recipients of the benefit can purchase necessities, such as food, clothing, and shelter.  Because SSI is needs based, individuals with resources above the statutory allowance are disqualified from the program.

Arizona special needs trusts preserve AHCCCS eligibility.

Arizona Health Care Cost Containment System (AHCCCS) is Arizona’s Medicaid program.  It provides health care programs for certain groups of Arizonans who have little or no income or resources.  AHCCCS is not a cash benefit, but it covers much-needed health care to Arizona families.  Like SSI, AHCCCS is needs based, so a sudden increase in resources can cause disqualification from the program.

Arizona special needs trusts preserve ALTCS eligibility.

Arizona Long-Term Care System (ALTCS) is a branch of AHCCCS that covers long-term health care to Arizonans who require care in a nursing facility, or who are at risk of requiring care in a nursing facility.  As a branch of AHCCCS, ALTCS does not provide a cash benefit, but it covers the price of many expensive long-term care services.  ALTCS is also a needs based program, so any increase in resources can render an ALTCS member ineligible for services.

As mentioned, any increase in resources can cause a member of any of these programs to be disqualified from the support upon which he or she relies.  Sometimes, however, establishing an Arizona special needs trust can provide a way for program members to supplement their resources without causing eligibility issues.  To learn more about Arizona special needs trusts, do not hesitate to contact JacksonWhite at (480) 818-6912, or fill out a consultation form.