Janet Brewer writes about countable and non-countable assets in special needs trusts. Her article begins as follows:
One of the reasons you may fund a special needs trust for your child is so that they can have your financial support while also receiving needed government benefits, including Medicaid, Medi-Cal, and Supplemental Security Income (SSI). But in order for your child to receive means-tested government benefits, the money in your child’s special needs trust may only be used for certain needs, services, and items.
The trustee in charge of distributing funds to your child from his or her trust should clearly understand which resources count when the government calculates who is eligible for benefits. Specifically, to qualify for SSI benefits, your child must not have more than $2,000 in countable resources.