I'm a parent of an autistic adult. My son, Nathaniel, was diagnosed around 3 years of age (he's now in his 30's), but as I look over some family movies (see March 30, 2011 post) I can see that he displayed many of the 10 signs of autism well before then.

His mother and I had only one thing in mind. What do we do?? In the early 80's there was little we could find about autism (no internet - what a lifesaver now!). We had his immediate needs to worry about. Was there a cure? Did he require medication? Childhood education had not yet come to mind. But with time, we needed to find out what resources were available around us.

Planning usually comes late for parents with autistic kids. We (well his mother and I) worried about his immediate needs and not the future. When Nathaniel reached 18, life as an adult posed many questions.

I hope that this can be a place where parents with autistic adults and children can communicate with those of us who have dealt with autistic adults. Yes, there are books and magazine articles about what to expect, and legal advice, but I have yet to find a place where experienced parents can share these experiences, give advice, and help parents of young children cope with the future of their child.

Mar 12, 2013

Discretionary Trusts

Your best bet would obviously be to consult a lawyer. I don't know what the differences are in Canada. A discretionary trust is one that is put in the mane of an organization (Nathaniel has full time care now for essentially an assisted living program) or a trust fund of a bank. What makes this important for autistic adults that are in assisted living (and don't equate this to assisted living of a senior)is that the inheritance is protected from the state government.Here in the state of Maryland, should Nathaniel be unprotected by no trust, Maryland could go back to day one and take all of the inheritance money as payment for state services that are normally provided to everyone as an entitlement. This way the organization can use the money for special things like clothing or even toys (Nathaniel is low functioning). He is in a great program where his care provider of 12 years treats him like her own child. We are very blessed for this.


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