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Our Clients

Client Centered

It says ‘Upstate’ in our name but 1 in 3 clients live in Westchester, NYC, or the Long Island area. Through virtual meetings and conference calls we will gladly work with you wherever you live!

Who are the type of clients we work with?

  • Parents approaching retirement that need a comprehensive solution for both their plan and their child’s.

  • A Trustee of a Special Needs Trust that has questions about trust compliance, tax reduction and needs help with their fiduciary duty to the beneficiary.

  • Grandparents making estate plans for a grandchild with a disability.

  • Families that are in transition: impacted by divorce, transition out of high school, unexpected windfall, loss of spouse or loved one.

  • Parents that want to have a plan in place rather than leave it up to chance or the whims of various government systems.

Frequently Asked Questions

  • What is the difference between Special Needs Planning and traditional Financial Planning?
    As a specialized business we have a deep understanding in the nuances of Social Security, Medicare and Medicaid, New York State benefits and Estate and Trust planning. Financial strategies that may be appropriate for most families may not be the best approach for your specific situation. We feel having a financial advisor that understands the capital markets and the department of social services will serve you well as you plan for your family.

  • Do I really need help managing a Supplemental Needs Trust?
    Third Party Supplemental Needs Trust are considered complex trusts under the Internal Revenue Code and have their own unique (and high) tax bracket. Without an understanding of the complex rules of SNT’s a well-intentioned trustee may find themselves paying thousands more in income tax than necessary. As the cornerstone of a special needs plan, there must be a comprehensive strategy to fund the SNT in the most appropriate manner while attempting to minimize unnecessary taxes. Are you prepared for a Trust audit from the Department of Social Services?

  • What happens to my child’s health care coverage when I retire?
    We work with a family to maximize all available insurance coverage from private to government benefits. Many large employer-based health insurance plans may allow an individual with a disability to stay on the plan after the employee enters retirement; for other families it is critical that we attempt to get the child on Medicare so that they have both Medicare and Medicaid after the parent retires. Everyone’s situation is complex and unique.

  • Will my child receive part of my Social Security when I retire?
    Under Title II of the Social Security Act a child that has a permanent disability that occurred before age 22 may be eligible for up to 50% of your Social Security benefit at Full Retirement Age (FRA). The Childhood Disability Benefit may be trigged once a parent collects Social Security, dies, or becomes permanent disabled. Furthermore, there may be additional spousal benefits paid to a parent that is caring for the child with disabilities even if that parent is under age 62. Each client has a unique situation, but this is often an overlooked strategy that can provide a significant financial benefit.

  • Are you a non-for-profit or for-profit company?
    While we partner with many local and national non-for-profit companies to provide education, the Upstate Special Needs Planning team is a for-profit entity.