As a public service to Florida residents, Cathy Jackson Lerman, PA invites citizens with family members who are disabled including the elderly, children, and adult children to contact The Florida Pooled Trust for assistance. Recipients of personal injury settlements are also eligible to participate in the Pooled Trust. As a lawyer and the mother of an adult permanently disabled child, I was delighted to find that the Pooled Trust permits its beneficiaries to receive public assistance benefits while preserving assets in the Pooled Trust for supplemental needs. There are many benefits to using a Pooled Trust.  Because the Pooled Trust is comprised of a large amount of funds that are pooled for management and investment purposes, the beneficiaries will receive better interest rates and other financial benefits from the market than would be otherwise available in an individual trust. Even persons of modest means can participate in the Pooled Trust which gives families, such as ours, a great deal of comfort that our son will be taken care of without having to burden family members or worry about continuity of care.

There are, of course, certain requirements and restrictions for the Pooled Trust.  The Trust account must be established by a parent, a grandparent, a legal guardian, the individual beneficiary or the Court. Each trust account must be established solely for the individual beneficiary, the assets in the Pooled Trust must belong solely to that beneficiary, and that beneficiary must be disabled as defined by law.

If you are interested in more information on this wonderful Florida program, I recommend you call The Center for Special Needs Trust Administration, Inc. in Clearwater, Florida. Their number is 877-766-5331. They will provide you with information on their services at no cost to you!

I can assure you that you will rest easier knowing your loved one is protected and you have provided them with a cost effective solution to maintain their government benefits eligibility while making sure they have their supplemental needs met.  We are indeed blessed to have this program available to all qualified Florida residents.  Best Wishes, Cathy