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Gawthrop Presents: Estate Planning for People with Special Needs, Disabilities

P. Kristen BennettWho will provide for our loved ones with special needs when we are gone? Who will be there to keep them safe? How can parents of special needs adults provide long-term protection, advocacy, and financial support, even after their death?

Gawthrop Greenwood attorney Kristen Bennett helped address these questions at a meeting of Families Speaking Up on June 13, 2017 at Easter Seals in New Castle, Delaware.

As a guest speaker for the audience of parents whose children have special needs, Bennett provided a basic understanding of topics including:

  • Types of trusts parents can set up, as well as pros & cons
  • Recommendations on what to choose for your family
  • Funding during parents’ life or at death
  • Powers of attorney, guardianship, medical directives & alternatives
  • Supported Decision-Making Act as an alternative to guardianship
    • The drawbacks and the controversial topic of whether it should be repealed
  • Setting up ABLE accounts
    • Tax-advantaged savings accounts for people with disabilities and their families
    • Requirements, benefits and drawbacks – will it work for your family?

Bennett was a guest speaker alongside Ellen Bockman, Executive Director of Delaware CarePlan. Established in 1999, Delaware CarePlan, Inc. helps create peace of mind by educating parents on setting up special needs trusts, devising individualized care plans and securing services. Bennett serves on the board of Delaware CarePlan

To book a workshop for your organization, submit your request here.

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Gawthrop Greenwood, PC has offices in West Chester, PA and Wilmington, DE serving clients throughout the greater mid-Atlantic region and nation. For more than a century, the firm has stood behind its core principle of providing high-quality legal services with personal attention. Gawthrop Greenwood’s diverse portfolio of clients comprises entrepreneurs, businesses, and governmental entities that entrust the firm with their representation in a wide range of matters including mergers and acquisitions, commercial litigation, estate and tax planning, land use and development, and domestic relations. A complete listing of the firm’s practice areas and attorneys, as well as a variety of legal resources, can be found at

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