Special needs children require long-term financial planning

Jul 13, 2011

Financial planning important for special needs children

Parents and caretakers of special needs children are encouraged to invest in lifelong financial plans such as annuities and whole life insurance policies. A study published by Harvard University shows that it can cost more than $3 million to care for a person with autism.

When a parent dies the process of transferring assets can be complicated and it may be helpful to involve a financial adviser. There are also Special Needs Trusts that can be set up to ensure the child will be taken care of.

Taking care of people with autism costs approximately $35 billion a year, according to the study. These costs can include direct and indirect medical costs associated with the disorder. However, some experts feel that this cost figure underestimates the true amount of money spent because there are an additional amount of services that are used for supporting individuals with autism.

"Given that the federal autism research budget has been historically less than $100 million per year and given that research budgets for other conditions with similar numbers of affected individuals are sometimes orders of magnitude higher, I hope that my research can help focus more attention on directing more resources toward finding prevention and treatment options for autism," said Michael Ganz, assistant professor of Society, Human Development, and Health at Harvard School of Public Health, who authored the study.
 

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