Oct 26-27, 2023Detroit, Michigan


2023 Special Needs Planning Symposium.

Sponsorships Available

Get your company or brand in front of leading fiduciaries and special needs attorneys during this intimate event, held at the elegant venue The MGM Grand Detroit,Oct 26-27, 2023.

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Day One (Virtual)

Thursday, Oct. 26th, 2023

SNT Fundamentals


Registration and Full Breakfast

7:30am – 8:30am

Kevin Urbatsch & Michele Fuller

(Fundamentals) Reviewing Fundamentals of Public Benefits for PWD

8:30am – 10:00am

Understanding the fundamentals of Supplemental Security Income (SSI), Social Security Disability Insurance (SSDI), Childhood Disabled Beneficiary Benefits (CDB), Medicaid, Medicare, and Community Living Support (CLS) is the critical first step for the professional to know how to properly plan for persons with disabilities and how to manage their personal and financial care during their lifetimes. This is the foundational program to all other programs. It is a must see for the beginner and an excellent refresher for the experienced professional.


Networking Break Visit with Exhibitors

10:00am – 10:30am

Peter Wall and Jeremy Lau

(Fundamentals) Administering Special Needs Trusts: Establishing Systems and Making Proper Disbursements

10:30am – 12:00pm

Our speakers have administered and helped successfully plan for hundreds of Special Needs Trusts, crafting a delicate balance between public benefits restrictions, financial prudency and trust longevity. Jeremy Lau and Peter Wall will review holistic planning for all fiduciaries and planners to help beneficiaries and their families plan for the future. Topics will include available services, structured settlements, legal planning, trust longevity, and how these facets interact to build a beneficiary-first system for distribution planning. An interactive case study will be used to illustrate the myriad of options and planning tools available, and case law and best practice tips will be provided.


Full Networking Lunch Served

12:00 p.m. – 1:30 p.m.

Ann Koerner

(Fundamentals) Creating a life plan for a loved one with disabilities

1:30 p.m. – 3:00 p.m.

It is critical that the SNT Trustee understand how disbursements are used to enhance the quality of life of a person with a disability. There are four main issues to decide: if the SNT Trustee makes the disbursement will it impact the beneficiaries’ public benefits; if the impact on benefits is acceptable, is the request in the best interests and for the primary benefit of the beneficiary; is the disbursement fiscally responsible and within the spending plan; if so, decide the best method to make the distribution. This program will cover a host of commonly applied situations and scenarios in which the SNT Trustee will have to decide if paying for food, shelter, vacations, or other common special needs disbursements requests.


Networking Break Visit with Exhibitors

3:00 p.m. – 3:30 p.m.

Scott MacDonald

(Fundamentals) Estate and Financial Planning for Persons with a Disability

3:30 p.m. – 4:30 p.m.

Many special needs trusts are expected to last for a beneficiary’s lifetime. For others, the objective is to simply have it last as long as possible. For those receiving a settlement, having an analysis on how long the money will last given historical or prospective spending, it is incredibly helpful when petitioning the court for a large disbursement as well as for getting buy-in from beneficiary’s with legal capacity. For families planning for their loved one, the question often asked of professionals is, "How much is enough?" This program will proviee the tools to prepare a depletion anlysis, including reviewing the factors that must be considered such as calculating lifetime income from public benefits, estimating annual costs, adjusting for inflation and fluctuations in the stock market.


Networking Break Visit with Exhibitors

4:30 p.m. – 4:45 p.m.

Michele Fuller & Will Lindahl

(Fundamentals) How and When to Use a Pooled Trust

4:45 p.m. – 5:45 p.m.

When persons with disabilities are receiving settlement benefits, knowing what ingrediants are available to use to create the right result for the client. Michele will give a broad overview of the considerations when working with litigation counsel, the tools available, and how to combine them to create the best result for the client that meets their goals.


Welcome Cocktail Reception

6:00 p.m. – 7:30 p.m.
Day Two

Friday, Oct. 27th, 2023

General Sessions


Full Breakfast and Networking

7:15 a.m. – 8:00 a.m.

David Lillesand

General Session: SSA Updates and the new D-SNP insurance benefits

8:00 a.m. – 9:30 a.m.

Venture deep into the heart of the Special Needs Planning landscape as we navigate the treacherous waters of the SSA Program Operations Manual, affectionately known as "the POMS." With a staggering 53,000 pages of indispensable wisdom, this invaluable resource holds the answers to the most pressing questions for our clients. A deep understanding of these rules is essential to paving the way for effective planning strategies. Guiding us through this thrilling expedition is the renowned legal expert, David Lillesand, whose expertise and insights have made him a celebrated speaker. Brace yourself for an exhilarating overview of the Supplemental Security Income, where David will navigate the uncharted territories of new regulations, groundbreaking cases, and influential Regional Chief Counsel Precedents. Stay at the forefront of your practice as he sheds light on the latest revelations, including any recent additions to the ever-evolving POMS. David will also provide an overview of insurance innovation, the D-SNP, a Medicare Advantage plan which provides comprehensive healthcare services for those who qualify for both Medicare and Medicaid. This new development is another tool in the planner’s arsenal.


Networking Break Visit with Exhibitors

9:30 a.m. – 10:00 a.m.


Blaine Brockman

General Session: Section 8 and SNTs: Everything Changes on January 1, 2024

10:00 a.m. – 11:30 a.m.

Section 8 and SNTs will see dramatic changes to how applicants and residents for Section 8 benefits will have their income and assets counted towards eligibility and rent. It will have an even more profound impact on the use of Special Needs Trusts for beneficiaries who receive Section 8 benefits. The law has been passed but has yet to be fully implemented. Learn what is in store, what (if anything) the special needs planner can do, and what advice they can offer the Section 8 recipient.t of pending changes affecting families under the Secure Act.


Networking Lunch

11:30 p.m. – 1:00 p.m.

Deidre R. Wheatley-Liss

General Session: SNT Taxation and Implication of Corporate Transparency Act to Special Needs Planners

1:00 p.m. – 2:30 p.m.

This seminar course is designed to provide special needs planners with a comprehensive understanding of taxation and the implications of the Corporate Transparency Act (CTA) in their practice. The course will also delve into the implications of the CTA, a new law that requires certain businesses to report their beneficial ownership information to the US Department of Treasury. Participants will learn about the specific tax implications for special needs planning, including the taxation of trust income and the tax treatment of expenses related to special needs trusts. The course will also cover the impact of the CTA on special needs planning, including the increased scrutiny of trusts and the potential impact on privacy and confidentiality. Throughout the seminar, participants will have the opportunity to engage in interactive discussions and case studies to reinforce their understanding of the material. By the end of the course, participants will have gained a comprehensive understanding of the taxation principles relevant to special needs planning and the implications of the CTA, allowing them to better serve their clients and navigate the changing regulatory landscape.


Networking Break Visit with Exhibitors

2:30 p.m. – 3:00 p.m.

David Lillesand

General Session: Maximizing Social Security Benefits and Advocating for your Client

3:00 p.m. – 4:30 p.m.

This session will explore top tips to maximize a client’s Social Security benefits, including reducing the ISM penalty, analyzing parental deeming to ascertain a child’s financial eligibility, the often overlooked CDB benefit, how to respond to SSA requests, and what to do in the event of an overpayment notice or other adverse SSA notice.


Grand Prize Drawing and Thank You Esteemed Attendees, Sponsors, and Exhibitors

4:30 p.m. – 5:00 p.m.