As the parent of a 31-year-old daughter with special needs, Lili Vasileff knows first-hand just how much financial strain that situation can exert on a family. “The costs can be enormous, and it feels like you’re always at risk of losing benefits,” she says.
As an FPA member and CERTIFIED FINANCIAL PLANNER™ (CFP®) professional who heads Divorce and Money Matters, a financial planning firm based in Greenwich, Conn., Vasileff also knows from her own experience just how valuable the financial planning process can be in helping families with a special needs person to address those unique financial demands. “My greatest motivation in life is to provide for my daughter financially, and to do so, you absolutely have to make financial planning a high priority. It enables a family to really focus on how they can best meet the person’s needs as well as their own.”
As much as those needs will differ from situation to situation, the six financial issues detailed below are common to many families that include a child or adult with special needs. Here Vasileff and other CERTIFIED FINANCIAL PLANNER™ professionals from the Financial Planning Association offer advice on how to address those issues.