The Voice is SNA’s newsletter, written by our member attorneys for the benefit of families, other attorneys and professionals who work with the special needs community.
These are in depth articles that address the complex issues we each face.
Finding a Balance of Autonomy, Support, and Assistance: Using Supported Decision-Making Agreements and Powers of Attorney
This edition of the Voice was written by Mark T. Johnson, CELA. Mark is a partner at Johnson Teigen, LLC in Fitchburg, Wisconsin. The law firm serves clients of all ages and circumstances with wills, trusts, powers of attorney, special needs planning and trusts, long-term care planning (including Medicaid), and guardianships. He is the 2019-2020 president of the Wisconsin Chapter of the National Academy of Elder Law Attorneys.
The Voice is the email newsletter of The Special Needs Alliance. This installment was written by Special Needs Alliance member, Lee M. Holmes, of Holmes, Holmes and Neisent, PLLC in Oklahoma City, Oklahoma. The law firm’s practice focuses on planning for persons with disabilities, estate planning, Medicaid and elder law. Lee is a founding member and fellow of the National Academy of Elder Law Attorneys, a certified elder law attorney (CELA), is listed in Best Lawyers in America and has been designated an Oklahoma Super Lawyer.
By Martha C. Brown, CELA Special needs trusts (SNTs) are established to supplement the benefits that individuals with disabilities receive from government programs, such as Medicaid and SSI (Supplemental Security [...]
The Voice is the e-mail newsletter of The Special Needs Alliance. This installment of The Voice was written by Special Needs Alliance member Kristen M. Lewis, who practices in Atlanta, Georgia at Smith, Gambrell & Russell, LLP. Kristen is also a Fellow of the American College of Trust and Estate Counsel (ACTEC). She is a frequent national speaker on special needs planning, and serves on the Boards of numerous non-profits that support individuals with disabilities and their families. In her vast amounts of free time, she trains certified service dogs for Canine Assistants in Milton, Georgia.
The Voice is the e-mail newsletter of The Special Needs Alliance. This installment was written by Pacheco, California, Special Needs Alliance member Stephen W. Dale of The Dale Law Firm, PC. Steve is a disability rights advocate and attorney dedicated to providing quality estate planning. He is a frequent speaker on a variety of disability related topics across the country. Steve regularly teaches courses to the public, financial professionals, and other attorneys on special needs trusts and trust administration. Additionally, he serves as the trustee for the Golden State Pooled Trust. Steve offers numerous videos and handouts to the public and his colleagues at www.achievingindependence.com.
By Shirley B. Whitenack, Esq. New regulations from the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS), scheduled to become effective November 28, 2016, prohibit federally funded nursing homes from requiring [...]
By Tara Anne Pleat, Esq.In many states, the Medicaid program can generally be seen as having a strong institutional bias when it comes to coverage of long-term care, forcing many [...]
How You Can Promote Supported Decision-Making for People with Intellectual and Developmental Disabilities
By Robin Shaffert, Senior Executive Officer, Individual & Family Support, The Arc You may have heard about supported decision-making and wonder what it is and how it applies to your [...]
It was in 2011 that individuals living at Harbor's Edge, a continuing care retirement community (CCRC) in Norfolk, asked a Special Needs Alliance member attorney to file a discrimination suit [...]
By Emily A. Donaldson, Esq. This year marks the 25th anniversary of the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA), landmark legislation likened in scope to the Civil Rights Act of 1964. [...]
By Professor Kim Dayton Making medical and financial choices for an aging parent or other adult with special needs can be stressful. Health care directives and financial powers of attorney [...]
This issue of The Voice is written by Ken Shulman who is a partner in the Boston, Massachusetts, office of Day Pitney LLP. Ken focuses his practice on estate planning and related issues for families who have children with disabilities and on elder law. He has served as a board member for several human service agencies including the Greater Boston ARC and presently serves as a board member for the Asperger's Association of New England. He also serves on the Combined Jewish Philanthropies Committee on Disabilities and previously served on the Board of Directors of the Massachusetts Chapter of the National Academy of Elder Law Attorneys. He is a co-author of Managing a Special Needs Trust, People with Disabilities Press (2012). Ken often serves as a trustee of special needs trusts at his clients' request.
On Paper, Filial Support Laws Hold Adult Children Accountable By Jason A. Frank, CELA, CAP, Fellow of NAELA It's no secret that long-term care is in crisis. Today, many nursing [...]
Representing SNA at the recent annual conference of the National Alliance of Medicare Set-Aside Professionals (NAMSAP), Kristen L. Behrens, of the Begley Law Group, and Shannon A. Laymon-Pecoraro, of the [...]
This installment of the Voice was written by Special Needs Alliance member Tara Anne Pleat. Tara is a founding partner of the law firm of Wilcenski & Pleat PLLC (www.wplawny.com) in Clifton Park, New York. She practices in the areas of special needs planning, elder law, and trust and estate planning and administration. Tara writes and lectures frequently on issues affecting individuals with disabilities and their families.
By Michael J. Astrue, Former Commissioner, Social Security Administration I moved back to the Boston area last year after my six-year term as Commissioner ended. It has mostly been a [...]
This installment of the Voice was written by Special Needs Alliance member Evan J. Krame who focuses his practice on estate planning, probate, special needs planning and elder law. Evan is a past president of Shared Horizons, operating a pooled trust serving the Mid-Atlantic region. Evan also served as co-chair of the Estates, Trusts and Probate Section of the DC Bar. He has been honored as a Top Attorney and Best Lawyer in Washington and Maryland. Evan is a candidate for rabbinic ordination, seeking to blend his work in the law with pastoral care and spiritual direction skills. You may visit his website at Law Offices of Evan J. Krame.
This issue of the Voice was written by SNA member Shirley B. Whitenack of Schenck, Price, Smith & King, LLP and an associate at her firm, Crystal West Edwards. Shirley's practice focuses on elder and special needs law and estate and trust litigation, planning and administration. She is a Fellow and the Vice President of the National Academy of Elder Law Attorneys (NAELA) and is a member of its Council of Advanced Practitioners (CAP). Crystal's practice focuses on elder and special needs law. She is a member of the Elder and Disability Law Section of the New Jersey Bar Association, NAELA, and Secretary of the New Jersey Chapter of NAELA and the Garden State Bar Association.
By Ram Meyyappan, Social Security Disability Help Parents of children with special needs are well aware of how costly it can be to provide the best care for their loved [...]
By Amy Goodman, Co-Director, Autism Now The topic of hiring an employee with special needs is important because employers need to know how to be more open- minded and sensitive [...]