It’s no secret that raising children requires significant financial resources. For children who will need care for the rest of their lives, the financial burden increases exponentially. There can be significant day-to-day costs, and then there is the prospect of their future without you. Secure financial planning can alleviate some of the worry special needs parents contend with. Let’s begin with the present.

Financial Planning for Now

Therapies, specialized doctors, and properly-trained caregivers all come with a cost. The most simple strategy to deploy is sticking to a budget. After you’ve considered your income, debts, and expenses, here are some other options that may reduce your everyday out-of-pocket costs.

Health Insurance– keep track of what is covered, inquire whenever you’re unsure of coverage gaps, and keep track of all out-of-pocket expenses.

Supplemental Security Income (SSI)– Your child may qualify for SSI if they meet the Social Security Administration’s criteria for having a disability.

529A– the 529Able plan allows you to contribute after-tax dollars into a savings account and withdraw that money tax-free for your child’s special needs education. Contribute to this account after you’ve funded your emergency and retirement savings. Any bit helps!

Emergency Fund—3 to 6 months of your expenses to use in the event of an emergency.

Financial Planning for the Future

You should make every effort possible to save for your retirement as early as possible. Compound interest can make a big difference, but it needs time to be truly effective. Here are some concerns for the future.

Retirement—whether you use an employer-sponsored retirement program or an IRA or Roth IRA, get saving. Experts suggest putting away 10-15% of your income, but you can work up to that if need be. You cannot care for your child if you cannot care for yourself.

Childcare—if your child will need care for the rest of his or her life, then you should definitely have a separate savings account for this care. Aim for at least $50-100 per month.

[Related: Hiring a Financial Advisor if You Aren’t Rich]

What Will Happen to My Special Needs Child if I Die Suddenly?

This is one of the questions that keeps special needs parents up at night. While it’s a tough one to ponder, there are ways to create some peace of mind.

Life Insurance—this is an obvious solution to some of your worries. However, what may not be obvious is the need to increase the amount. Remember that your child may have more complicated income needs such as: caregivers, specialized medical providers, medications, health insurance, transportation, as well as food and housing needs.

Disability Income Insurance—this insurance will provide your family with some consistency in income should you become injured or so sick that you cannot work. Insurance like this extends the life of your emergency fund as well.

Financial Planning for Special Needs Children Made Simpler

Contact the team at Blisk Financial Group if you would like expert and sensitive advice concerning financial planning that matches your unique situation.