Exceptional Children, Extraordinary Potential


Children with Disabilities / Special Health Care Needs

Civil Rights


Guardianship / Supported Decision Making

         --- A guardianship is is a court-ordered protective arrangement for a person (called the ward or "protected person") who has been found by the Court to be incapacitated and in need of someone to oversee his or her personal care and decision-making to protect the ward's health and safety.  A guardianship may be used only as is necessary to promote and protect the well-being of the incapacitated person.
        --- The Montana Guardianship Legal Assistance Program (MT-GLAP), in partnership with dedicated volunteer attorneys, Montana Legal Services Association, the State Bar of Montana, and the Montana Supreme Court Pro Bono Program, is a statewide program designed to help meet the guardianship and conservatorship needs of low and moderate income Montanans, and those seeking assistance for special needs children.
        --- For information on program eligibility contact:  Angie Wagenals, Pro Bono Coordinator, Montana Legal Services Association at 406-442-9830, Ext. 148 or awagenha@mtlsa.org


Social Security Administration Benefits for Children with Disabilities

  • Supplemental Security Income (SSI) for Children - SSI is a Federal income supplement program designed to help children who are blind or disabled under the age of 18.
          --- SSI Child Disability Starter Kit (for children under age 18) - www.ssa.gov/disability/disability_starter_kits_child_eng.htm    
          --- Compassionate Allowances Program - www.ssa.gov/compassionateallowances/index.htm
              Reduces waiting time to reach a disability determination for children with the most serious disabilities.

Trusts / Savings Accounts / Financial Planning / Estate Planning

  • ABLE Accounts - An ABLE account allows a qualifying individual with a disability to have savings set aside up to allowable amounts, without impacting Social Security and Medicaid. Savings can then be used for qualifying disability-related expenses. An individual can only have one ABLE account and the person who benefits from the account is considered the owner of the account.
          --- ABLE National Resource Center - www.ablenrc.org
          --- Montana ABLE Accounts, Montana Department of Public Health and Human Services - http://dphhs.mt.gov/dsd/developmentaldisabilities/ABLE
          --- Montana ABLE - https://savewithable.com/mt/home.html
          --- Montana ABLE Agent Authorization/Power of Attorney Form - https://cdn.unite529.com/jcdn/files/UABLE/pdfs/mt-poa.pdf

  • Third Party Trusts / Special Needs Trusts
          --- PLUK Third Party Trusts are now managed by Rural Dynamics, Inc., Great Falls, 406-454-5709.  Tom Jacobson, Executive Director, tomj@ruraldynamics.org

         --- Montana Self-Sufficiency Trusts Handbook (PLUK Legacy Resource 2005)
  • Guides
           --- Estate Planning for Families with Minor and/or Special Needs Children, Montana State University Extension - http://msuextension.org/publications/FamilyFinancialManagement/MT199117HR.pdf

         --- Financial Planning Guide for Parents with a Child with Special Needs, eParent.com - http://www.eparent.com/money-uncategorized/a-financial-planning-guide-for-parents-of-a-child-with-special-needs/