In Special Needs News

The answer depends on the terms of the trust, the amount of funds it holds, and the flexibility of the trustee. The trust may or may not have limits on what it may be used for. For instance, it may say that it can only pay for your nephew’s health, education, and basic living needs, or it may be more expansive, permitting the trustee to pay for anything that they feel would benefit your nephew. Next, the trustee must consider whether the trust can afford the expense in relation to your nephew’s expected future needs. Finally, in terms of paying your costs as well as your nephew’s, trustees with sufficient assets may pay for companions if that’s the only way for the beneficiary to be able to make the trip. Usually in such a case, the trust would pay for one companion, but not two. That wouldn’t matter if you’re driving, but could be an issue if you’re flying.

Harry S. Margolis practices elder law, estate, and special needs planning in Boston and Wellesley, Massachusetts. He is the founder of and answers consumer questions about estate planning issues here and at

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