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Special Needs Trusts for Persons With Disabilities to Protect Government Benefits and the Individual

Administering First- and Third-Party Trusts; Addressing the Interplay Between SNTs, Guardianships, and Conservatorships

Recording of a 90-minute CLE video webinar with Q&A

This program is included with the Strafford CLE Pass. Click for more information.
This program is included with the Strafford All-Access Pass. Click for more information.

Conducted on Thursday, October 20, 2022

Recorded event now available

or call 1-800-926-7926

This CLE course will prepare elder law practitioners to identify and deal with the crucial issues and pitfalls that arise when drafting special needs trusts. The panel will outline practical solutions to protect public benefits for clients.


Special needs trusts are an integral part of the practice of elder law. To handle these trusts properly for clients, counsel must know when special needs trusts are appropriate, how to draft first-and third-party special needs trusts to protect public benefits for clients, and how to administer the trusts.

Since becoming law, the Special Needs Trust Fairness Act permits mentally competent individuals with disabilities to establish special needs trusts for their benefit. In the past, only parents, grandparents, legal guardians, or a court could set up trusts on behalf of a disabled person.

Counsel must also understand tax consequences and the impact on a client's public benefits when establishing a special needs trust. Practitioners must be aware of pitfalls to avoid when amending special needs trusts and consider how guardianship and special needs trusts do and don't mesh.

Listen as our panel of elder law practitioners discusses critical points for elder law counsel to understand and weigh when drafting first- and third-party special needs trusts. The presenters will also outline the potential hazards for counsel when amending special needs trusts.



  1. SNT overview
  2. Public benefits considerations
  3. ABLE Act
  4. Drafting considerations
  5. Pitfalls


The panel will review these and other key issues:

  • How can counsel best protect public benefits when drafting special needs trusts?
  • What are the tax issues to consider in the drafting process?
  • What pitfalls may arise when amending special needs trusts?


Kefalas Dudek, Patricia
Patricia E. Kefalas Dudek

Patricia E. Kefalas Dudek & Associates

Ms. Kefalas Dudek's practice focuses on elder law, Medicaid, estate planning, estates/trust administration,...  |  Read More

Mariscal, Karen
Karen B. Mariscal, Esq.

Mariscal Special Needs Law

Ms. Mariscal practices in the areas of special needs estate planning, guardianship, and disability law. In addition to...  |  Read More

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Strafford will process CLE credit for one person on each recording. All formats include course handouts.

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