A special needs trust is established to prevent people from losing benefits from certain government programs after receiving a settlement. An influx of wealth can make one ineligible for benefits from Supplementary Security Income (SSI), Veterans Aid and Attendance, Medicaid, and government housing. A special needs trust supplements but does not replace, these benefits by paying for non-covered services or equipment. Below are the applicable laws to establishing a special needs trust in Ohio.
U.S. Code Section 1396p.(d)(4)(A).
(4) This subsection shall not apply to any of the following trusts:
(A) A trust containing the assets of an individual under age 65 who is disabled (as defined in section 1382c(a)(3) of this title) and which is established for the benefit of such individual by the individual, a parent, grandparent, legal guardian of the individual, or a court if the State will receive all amounts remaining in the trust upon the death of such individual up to an amount equal to the total medical assistance paid on behalf of the individual under a State plan under this subchapter. Full text
ORC Ann. 5163.21 Eligibility determinations for cases involving medicaid programs.
(F) The principal or income from any of the following shall not be a resource available to the applicant or recipient:
(1)(a) A special needs trust that meets all of the following requirements:
(i) The trust contains assets of an applicant or recipient under sixty-five years of age and may contain the assets of other individuals.
(ii) The applicant or recipient is disabled as defined in rules adopted under section 5163.02 of the Revised Code.
(iii) The trust is established for the benefit of the applicant or recipient by any of the following: the applicant or recipient, if established on or after December 13, 2016; a parent, grandparent, or legal guardian of the applicant or recipient; or a court.
(iv) The trust requires that on the death of the applicant or recipient the state will receive all amounts remaining in the trust up to an amount equal to the total amount of medicaid payments made on behalf of the applicant or recipient.
(b) If a special needs trust meets the requirements of division (F)(1)(a) of this section and has been established for a disabled applicant or recipient under sixty-five years of age, the exemption for the trust granted pursuant to division (F) of this section shall continue after the disabled applicant or recipient becomes sixty-five years of age if the applicant or recipient continues to be disabled as defined in rules adopted under section 5163.02 of the Revised Code. Except for income earned by the trust, the grantor shall not add to or otherwise augment the trust after the applicant or recipient attains sixty-five years of age. An addition or augmentation of the trust by the applicant or recipient with the applicant’s own assets after the applicant or recipient attains sixty-five years of age shall be treated as an improper disposition of assets.